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Has Short Interest in Phillips 66 Fallen?

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Nov. 20 2020, Updated 5:02 p.m. ET

Short interest in Phillips 66

Short interest in Phillips 66 (PSX) expressed as a percentage of outstanding shares has fallen from 1.6% on May 30, 2018, to the current level of 1.1%. Usually, everything else being equal, a decline in short interest could mean a decrease in bearish sentiment for a stock. However, in the same period, Phillips 66 stock price has fallen 0.7%.

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Why the fall in bearish sentiment?

The fall in short interest in Phillips 66 could be due to better-than-expected second-quarter earnings. PSX’s adjusted net income, attributable to its shareholders, rose from $569 million in Q2 2017 to $1,322 million in Q2 2018. PSX’s adjusted earnings rose due to a rise in midstream, chemicals, and refining earnings, partly offset by the fall in marketing earnings. For more on this, read Phillips 66’s Earnings Beat the Estimates, Stock Rose 5%.

Peers’ short interest

Short interest in PSX’s peers Valero Energy (VLO), PBF Energy (PBF), and Delek US Holdings (DK) have also fallen 0.7%, 1.8%, and 1.4%, respectively, since May 30. In the same period, VLO and DK stock have fallen 3.4% and 3.5%, respectively. However, PBF stock has risen 2.5% since May 30.

Currently, VLO, PBF, and DK have short interests standing at 2.1%, 4.2%, and 4.1%, respectively. Thus, VLO, PBF, and DK’s short interest percentages are higher than PSX’s.

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