The economy is improving, but stock investors already know this, says Paul R. La Monica at CNN Money. The U.S. is seeing a "BBQ recovery" that is slowly but surely cooking along -- the only problem, he says, is the market already reflects this and may soon be ripe for a pullback.
La Monica cites several sources of positivity -- a huge drop in jobless claims, non-threatening inflation levels, absence of bad news in Europe, and better-than-expected earnings from Bank of America and Morgan Stanley. But the overall market has been essentially flat on these news stories.
"It's true that investors may be getting ahead of themselves a little bit. A pullback in stocks wouldn't surprise me, especially if Europe's debt problems take a sudden turn for the worse again," he said.
Business section: Investing ideas
Keeping this possibility in mind, we ran a screen on stocks that may be exposed to a possible pullback if La Monica is indeed correct.
We ran a screen on large-cap stocks that have rallied over 50% over the last quarter for those with bearish sentiment from short-sellers. We screened for stocks with significant increases in shares shorted month over month.
Do you think these stocks are the "burgers to flip"?
List sorted by increase in shares shorted as a percent of share float. (Click here to access free, interactive tools to analyze these ideas.)
1. United Rentals: Operates as an equipment rental company in the United States and Canada. Market cap of $2.18B. The stock has increased 71.79% over the last quarter. Shares shorted have increased from 12.03M to 16.49M month-over-month, a change representing 7.68% of the company's 58.06M share float.
2. Spectrum Pharmaceuticals
3. RAM Energy Resources: Engages in the acquisition, development, exploitation, exploration, and production of oil and natural gas properties primarily in Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and West Virginia. Market cap of $312.09M. The stock has increased 395.00% over the last quarter. Shares shorted have increased from 293.90K to 1.89M month-over-month, a change representing 2.87% of the company's 55.57M share float.
4. RSC Holdings
5. OCZ Technology Group
6. Cedar Realty Trust: Engages in the ownership, operation, development and redevelopment of supermarket-anchored community shopping centers and drug store-anchored convenience centers in the United States. Market cap of $326.45M. The stock has increased 71.43% over the last quarter. Shares shorted have increased from 2.33M to 3.29M month-over-month, a change representing 1.77% of the company's 54.26M share float.
7. KB Home
8. Molina Healthcare: Provides Medicaid-related solutions to meet the health care needs of low-income families and individuals, as well as assists state agencies in their administration of the Medicaid program. Market cap of $1.28B. The stock has increased 83.99% over the last quarter. Shares shorted have increased from 2.40M to 2.68M month-over-month, a change representing 1.12% of the company's 24.92M share float.
Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the stocks mentioned above. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research.
Kapitall's Alexander Crawford does not own any of the shares mentioned above. Short data sourced from Yahoo! Finance.
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