BlackBerry Ltd Short Interest Up 4.4% In June

BlackBerry Ltd Short Interest Up 4.4% In June
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BlackBerry stock witnessed a significant spike in short interest for June. Short interest for the Canadian firm, as of June 15, totaled 90.9 million shares, which is an increase of 4.4% from the May 29 total of 87.1 million shares. Presently, 18.5% of the company’s shares are sold short.

BlackBerry buyback “incremental positive”

A few days ago, BlackBerry announced plans to buy back 12 million shares starting on June 29 and ending June 28, 2016. The buyback represents around 2.5% of the total outstanding float. Despite this being positive news for investors, the stock continued to slide following the company’s earnings report earlier last week. In a note, JPMorgan’s Rod Hall termed the move as “incremental positive news,” adding that the Canadian firm needs to “improve underlying fundamentals to spark more investor interest.”

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Hall reiterated his Neutral rating on the stock earlier this month, noting that BES 12 will be the key for a “real turnaround.” During the recent earnings call, BlackBerry CEO John Chen informed investors that the firm won 2,600 enterprise customers in the quarter, and of those, 60% were from BES 12 via the company’s EZ Pass program. Also Chen told investors that revenue from software and licensing was up 150% from the same quarter last year. For the quarter, the Canadian firm posted revenue of $658 million compared to the consensus estimate of $679.64 million. The loss for the quarter came in at 5 cents per share, while operating loss was $7 million.

Consensus rating of Hold

Many analysts have released their verdicts on BlackBerry in recent weeks. In a research note on Sunday, Oppenheimer analysts reiterated their Hold on the Canadian firm. JPMorgan Chase, in a note issued on Friday, reiterated its Neutral rating on the stock. Analysts at Raymond James maintained their Market Perform rating on BlackBerry with a price target of $10.25 in a note on Thursday. BMO Capital Markets, in a research note on Thursday, reiterated its Market Perform rating on the Canadian firm with a price target of $9. Finally, in a note issued last week, MKM Partners reiterated its Hold rating. Presently, BlackBerry has an average rating of Hold and an average price target of $9.83.

BlackBerry has a 52-week high of $12.63 and a 52-week low of $8.51. On Friday, BlackBerry shares closed down 0.70% at $8.57, and year to date, the stock is down by over 22%.

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