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Upstream Stocks with Highest Short Interest-to-Equity Float Ratio

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Oct. 10 2016, Updated 4:04 p.m. ET

Short interest-to-equity float ratios for upstream stocks

On October 7, 2016, California Resources (CRC) had the highest short interest-to-equity float ratio of ~39.1% among upstream stocks in the SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production ETF (XOP). One month ago, it was ~33.2%. Three months ago, it was ~27%.

CRC’s short interest-to-equity float ratio has risen 45% over the last three months. During this period, the stock has fallen 11.1%, the largest fall among upstream stocks. The company’s net debt-to-EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization) ratio is 7.2x. Its cash and cash equivalents were ~$2 million in 2Q16.

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CRC was also among the high implied volatility stocks we looked at in the previous two parts of this series. High short interest in a stock can sometimes be a reason for high volatility in a stock. Stock prices can move wildly as bulls and bears slug it out. Stocks can also move sharply when shorts need to close out trades.

Continental Resources

Continental Resources’ (CLR) short interest-to-equity float ratio is ~23.5%. One month ago, it was ~24.3%. Three months ago, it was 26.2%. Its cash and cash equivalents totaled ~$16.6 million in 2Q16.

CLR stock has risen ~22.2% in the last three months. The short interest-to-equity float ratio for the stock fell 10.3% over this period.

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Oasis Petroleum

Currently, Oasis Petroleum’s (OAS) short interest-to-equity float ratio is ~21.2%. One month ago, it was ~20.6%. Three months ago, it was ~16.1%. In the last three months, the stock has risen approximately 31.3%.

In the last three months, OAS’s short interest-to-equity float ratio rose 31.7%. Its net debt-to-EBITDA ratio was 5.4x in 2Q16, and its cash and cash equivalents totaled $6.5 million.

Synergy Resources

Synergy Resources’ (SYRG) short interest-to-equity float ratio is ~19.5%. One month ago, it was 16.1%. Three months ago, it was ~10.9%. Its cash and cash equivalents totaled $133.9 million.

SYRG has risen about 0.7% in the last three months. The small gain in the stock coincides with a 78.4% rise in its short interest-to-equity float ratio.

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Whiting Petroleum

Whiting Petroleum’s (WLL) short interest-to-equity float ratio is ~19.5%. One month ago, it was ~18.4%. Three months ago, it was ~14.3%.

WLL’s net debt-to-EBITDA ratio is 4.6x, and its cash and cash equivalents totaled $15.3 million in 2Q16. The stock has risen 11.1% in the last three months. Its short interest-to-equity float ratio rose 36% over the same time period.

Other upstream stocks

Carrizo Oil & Gas (CRZO) and Matador Resources (MTDR) have short interest-to-equity float ratios of ~17.9% and ~16.9%, respectively.

Generally, we can see a trend that the short interest in a stock and its prices are inversely related. Short interest and stock prices tend to move in opposite directions.

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