Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ:PLUG) stock has been on a roller coaster. Shares of the fuel cell company have rallied an eye-popping 661% in the last 12 months. But if you look at one-month figures, the stock is down 25%. The volatility represents a significant opportunity for traders and short sellers. However, short sellers seem to be shying away from the stock.
22.3% of Plug Power shares sold short
Short interest in Plug Power fell from 38.2 million on August 15 to 35.93 million on August 29, the latest date for which data is available. That’s a drop of 5.9%. Average daily trading volume also declined from 13.75 million to 8.95 million in the same period. Based on the average trading volume, it would take short sellers a little over four days to cover their positions.
As of August 29, about 22.3% of Plug Power’s outstanding shares are held short. However, the company remains optimistic about its growth. After beating consensus revenue for Q2, Plug Power expected bookings to rise to $115-$120 million by the end of September. Earlier this month, the company named Chris Hutter as its new chief financial officer, effective November 6. Dave Waldek has been serving as interim CFO since April 2013.
Plug Power names a new CFO
Before joining Plug Power, Hutter served as the CFO and EVP of PowerSecure International, Inc. (NYSE:POWR), which offers products and services to electric utility companies. Air Liquide, one of the largest shareholders of Plug Power, sold part of its stake in the Latham, New York-based company last month, reaping huge benefits from its last year’s investments.
The French company had agreed to invest $6.5 million in Plug Power when the U.S. fuel cell company was on the verge of bankruptcy. Of that, $2.6 million was for preferred stock that could be converted into 11 million Plug Power common shares after one year. During that one year, Plug Power share skyrocketed. So, Air Liquide converted 50% of its preferred stock into 5.51 million common stock. The company then sold those shares for a whopping $32 million.
Plug Power shares plunged 3.03% to $4.48 at 12:45 PM EDT on Thursday.