Most Shorted Stocks vs. the S&P 500

By Callum Thomas

This chart draws inspiration from some of the charts and themes I shared in last week’s S&P500 #ChartStorm, it shows the Thomson Reuters “Most Shorted Stocks” index vs the S&P500 (as well as the performance ratio between the two).  When you see the “most shorted stocks index” materially outperforming vs the broader index you can draw one key conclusion: shorts are getting squeezed.  Basically what happens in a short squeeze is you get a rush to cover short positions as bears get caught wrong-footed.  So you can basically say that much of the recent rally was driven by short-covering.  However, as I’ve noted elsewhere there are a few macro undercurrents that are preventing the S&P500 itself from heading unrestrainedly higher, and this is creating a series of winners (e.g. US small caps) and losers (e.g. emerging markets).

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