Total: Has the Short Interest Risen?


Oct. 22 2018, Updated 6:31 a.m. ET

Short interest in Total

The short interest (as a percentage of outstanding shares) in Total (TOT) has risen 0.05% since July 2, the beginning of the third quarter, to the current level of 0.10%. Usually, a rise in the short interest implies an increase in the bearish sentiment for the stock. During the same period, Total stock has risen 1.9%.

Since July 2, the positive sentiments in Total have decreased due to the fall in oil prices. WTI has fallen 2.7% since July 2 to the current level of $72 per barrel. Oil prices impact integrated energy companies’ upstream earnings. Total’s second-quarter earnings missed Wall Street analysts’ estimate, which could have also impacted the positive sentiments.

Since mid-September, WTI has risen and the short interest in Total has declined.

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Peers’ short interest

Since July 2, the short interest in PetroChina (PTR) and YPF (YPF) has risen by 0.02 percentage points and 0.46 percentage points. Currently, the short interest in PetroChina and YPF is 0.09% and 0.61%, respectively. The short interest in Equinor (EQNR) has increased by 0.06 percentage points since July 2 to 0.21%.

If we consider their stock prices, PetroChina, YPF, and Equinor have risen 5.2%, 11.4%, and 4.9%, respectively, since July 2.

Pre-earnings series overview

In this series, we reviewed Total’s EPS estimate and segmental earnings prospects for the third quarter. We also evaluated Total’s stock performance, dividend yield trend, and analysts’ ratings ahead of the company’s third-quarter earnings. We calculated the stock price forecast range for Total for the ten-day period before October 26. We concluded the series by reviewing the short interest in Total before its third-quarter earnings.


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