ORTEX Short Interest Insights from January


January saw the market rebound in the wake of 2022’s carnage, and ORTEX Short Interest Data showed most sectors seeing a decline in bearish bets last month as investors repositioned their portfolios for a new year. Short interest (SI) shares in the utilities sector fell the most, declining 10.6%, while industrials stocks saw a 4.1% jump in SI shares.

Here are ORTEX’s estimates for how aggregate short interest (SI) shares changed for each S&P 500 sector for the month of January.

Sector Starting SI Shares Ending SI Shares % Change
Energy 436,540,506 400,765,303 (8.2%)
Materials 195,390,120 202,821,521 3.8%
Industrials 469,587,049 488,857,318 4.1%
Consumer Discretionary 869,212,797 826,007,627 (5.0%)
Consumer Staples 341,255,447 320,792,936 (6.0%)
Health Care 433,179,654 395,947,217 (8.6%)
Financials 540,602,432 540,925,792 0.1%
Information Technology 897,170,970 861,158,330 (4.0%)
Communication Services 811,063,030 763,052,009 (5.9%)
Utilities 308,046,207 275,450,464 (10.6%)
Real Estate 284,826,505 267,878,998 (6.0%)


The strong performance of the major indexes last month led to heavy losses for short-sellers. In the aggregate, the bears lost $36.3 billion last month.

Top Short Seller Gain and Loss for January

After delivering billions in profits to short sellers in 2022, Tesla (Nasdaq: TSLA) stock enjoyed a massive rebound in January that led to heavy losses for the bears. Shares of the electric vehicle (EV) giant surged by 41% last month while short interest was simultaneously trending higher, resulting in $4.5 billion in losses for shorts. That was the biggest loss for short-sellers in January by a long shot.

The stock that generated the most profit for the bears last month was pharmaceutical juggernaut Pfizer (NYSE: PFE). Declining revenue from COVID-19 vaccines and treatments is hurting sentiment, and short-sellers reaped $353 million in gains from betting against Pfizer, the most profitable short trade in January. 

Short Squeeze Candidates with the Highest ORTEX Short Scores

Pessimism among EV stocks continued to persist in January, as 4 pure-play EV stocks ranked among the highest ORTEX Short Scores on our platform (with at least 3 analysts covering the stock). Our ORTEX Short Score uses a multi-factor model that incorporates multiple short-related metrics, with a higher score indicating that the stock is heavily-shorted and has other characteristics that increase the possibility of a short squeeze occurring.

Ticker Stock Market cap USD Industry Short Score Estimated Short Interest % FF
EVGO EVgo $431,413,004 Retailing 98.11 39.29
NKLA Nikola Corporation $1,420,415,793 Capital Goods 96.84 26.50
CRCT Cricut $2,155,188,218 Consumer Durables and Apparel 96.73 23.73
BYND Beyond Meat $1,048,561,048 Food, Beverage and Tobacco 96.52 37.44
SDIG Stronghold Digital Mining $12,723,641 Software and Services 94.68 26.67
BLNK Blink Charging Co. $676,504,034 Capital Goods 93.71 30.70
FSR Fisker Inc. $2,208,326,099 Automobiles and Components 93.12 36.64
PRME Prime Medicine $1,420,968,797 Pharmaceuticals, Biotechnology and Life Sciences 92.64 14.64
IVC Invacare Corporation $25,486,651 Health Care Equipment and Services 92.41 27.17
DNMR Danimer Scientific $233,193,947 Materials 92.27 19.43


Join now for free