Activist Short Sellers Seek Foreign Rip-Offs by Activist Insight

Activist Insight reveals top foreign destinations for activist short sellers

Activist short sellers have targeted 273 companies whose headquarters were in a different country to where the investor was based since 2010—accounting for more than two-fifths of activist short campaigns—according to Activist Insight data.

Activist Short Sellers
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Top destinations for activist short sellers

The top five destinations for activist short sellers, outside of their own countries, were as follows:

  1. China – 90 companies targeted 2010 to date
  2. U.S. – 67 companies targeted
  3. Canada – 30 companies targeted
  4. Israel – 13 companies targeted
  5. Hong Kong – 11 companies targeted

The data reveal that speculation on China’s economy and stock markets peaked in 2011, when 39 companies were subject to activist short reports from foreign investors. Last year also saw significant activity, with 15 companies targeted, compared to only 3 in the year to date.

The U.S., with its First Amendment protections for speech and lack of disclosure on short selling, came in second among foreign short sellers. However, it is the most targeted country overall, with 417 companies targeted since 2010—375 by U.S.-based short sellers*.

For the data, anonymous short sellers whose location was not disclosed were excluded.

Commenting on the data, Activist Insight spokesman Josh Black said, “Activist short selling has been on the rise in recent years, and the presence of bubbles in certain sectors and geographies can be an incentive for certain investors to turn their attention to a particular universe and begin researching.”

* 25 U.S. companies have been targeted by both U.S.-based and foreign activists (350 companies targeted only by domestic short sellers, plus 42 foreign only, plus 25 both = 417 total).

For queries, contact Josh Black at [email protected], or +44 (0)20 7129 1314.

About Activist Insight

Since 2012, Activist Insight has provided its clients with the most comprehensive information on activist investing worldwide. Regularly quoted in the financial press, Activist Insight is the trusted source for data in this evolving space. In 2016, Activist Insight launched Activist Insight Shorts after acquiring Activist Shorts Research. Activist Insight offers three great products: Activist Insight Online, Activist Insight Shorts and Activist Insight Monthly.