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Short interest rises at Nasdaq, declines in NYSE stocks

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, April 7, 2014.
Getty Images
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, April 7, 2014.

More new shorts were added in Nasdaq stocks in the end of March, but short interest declined on NYSE-listed names.

After hitting a two year high earlier in the year, short interest in NYSE stocks declined in the second half of March for the first time in 10 weeks.

Stocks listed on NASDAQ,however, saw an increase of 1.91 percent during the same period. As of March end, short interest rose to about 7.67 billion shares, compared with 7.53 billion shares as of mid-March.

The NYSE reported on Monday that short interest declined to 14.5 billion shares for the final weeks of March from 14.6 billion on March 14, a 1.05 percent decrease – the biggest such decrease since December of last year.

Biotech was one of the biggest shorts. Stocks with some of the highest ratios on Nasdaq were Myriad Genetics, WorldAcceptance and Sodastream, with more than 30 percent of outstanding shares sold as short.

NASDAQ's Most Shorted

Ticker Security Name Last Chg %Chg SI as % of SO
MYGN Myriad Genetics 38.75 0.75 1.97% 54.70%
WRLD World Acceptance 79.92 -0.08 -0.10% 39.70%
OUTR Outerwall Inc. 66.54 -1.69 -2.48% 39.50%
SODA SodaStream 39.69 -0.23 -0.58% 36.40%
UNXL Uni-Pixel 7.35 -0.06 -0.81% 36.30%
SWHC Smith & Wesson 13.94 -0.22 -1.55% 36.00%
EBIX Ebix 16.44 -0.34 -2.03% 34.40%
SRPT Sarepta Therapeutics 22.82 -0.39 -1.70% 34.10%
VVUS VIVUS 4.9 -0.01 -0.21% 32.30%
EGLE Eagle Bulk Shipping 3.91 -0.27 -6.46% 32.10%

Similarly, Gamestop, U.S. Steel, Lennar and Joy Global remain the top shorted stock in the S&P 500.

S&P's Most Shorted

Ticker Security Name Last Chg %Chg SI as % of SO
GME GameStop Corp 41.08 -0.13 -0.32% 28.10%
X United States Steel 26.98 -0.63 -2.28% 25.20%
JOY Joy Global Inc. 60.64 -0.28 -0.46% 22.50%
ADT ADT Corporation 30.13 -0.18 -0.59% 21.80%
CVC Cablevision Systems 16.7 -0.32 -1.91% 21.80%
FTR Frontier Comm. 5.49 0.04 0.83% 20.00%
VRSN VeriSign 49.22 -0.96 -1.91% 17.60%
DGX Quest Diagnostics 59.07 -0.09 -0.15% 17.20%
PETM PetSmart 67.96 0.04 0.06% 16.40%
LEN Lennar Corporation 39.1 -0.08 -0.20% 16.20%

Short interest measures the total number of shares of a security that has been sold short, expressed as a percent of total tradeable shares.

Investors track short-interest levels to gain a sense of where a stock might be headed, along with some insight into whether any positive news might force short traders to cover their positions, pushing stocks higher.

Russell 1000's Most Shorted

Ticker Security Name Last Chg %Chg SI as % of SO
MYGN Myriad Genetics 38.67 0.67 1.76% 54.70%
JCP J. C. Penney 7.78 -0.74 -8.69% 36.20%
CLF Cliffs Natural 19.75 -0.48 -2.37% 33.90%
VEEV Veeva Systems 22.98 -0.28 -1.20% 33.70%
ZU Zulily 46.34 -0.19 -0.41% 32.00%
GME GameStop 40.94 -0.27 -0.66% 28.10%
DDD 3D Systems 50.09 1.31 2.69% 26.20%
RMD ResMed 44.82 -0.38 -0.84% 25.30%
X United States Steel 26.89 -0.71 -2.57% 25.20%
HLF Herbalife 61.04 1.2 2.01% 24.70%

- By CNBC's Pradip Sigdyal

Symbol
Price
 
Change
%Change
IBB
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MYGN
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WRLD
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SODA
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NASDAQ
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GME
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X
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LEN
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JOY
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S&P 500
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