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HST 1Q 2012 REPORT CARD

In an effort to evaluate performance, we compare how the quarter measured up to previous management commentary and guidance.

 

 

OVERALL:  BETTER - You wouldn't know it from the stock action but HST more than delivered in Q1 and forward commentary remained positive.  Guidance was raised.

  • 2012 GUIDANCE
    • BETTER:  HST raised RevPAR guidance by 1%, EBITDA guidance by $20-30MM and Adjusted FFO by 4 cents
  • GROUP BOOKINGS
    • BETTER:  Stronger demand has driven group bookings up 7.5% YoY for the remaining three quarters.  ADR is up 2% and recent bookings were up 8%.  Transient bookings also continue to run well ahead of last year's levels and suggest strong rate growth.  
  • TRANSACTION ACTIVITY OUTLOOK
    • SAME:  Reiterated a growing investment pipeline and expect further transactions later in 2012. 
  • DISPOSITION ACTIVITY
    • SAME:  The disposition of the San Francisco Airport Marriott at $113MM is in-line with its guidance of $100-115MM for the 1H of 2012.  
  • COST INFLATION/MARGIN IMPACT
    • SAME:  2012 comparable hotel adjusted operating profit margins is expected to increase 50 bps- in the middle of HST's previous guidance range of 25-75 bps.   
  • REGIONAL GUIDANCE
    • SLIGHTLY BETTER:  Most of the markets' REVPAR expectations came in as expected.  Atlanta outperformed in 1Q with 2Q looking rosy as well.  
  • EUROPEAN JV
    • SLIGHTLY BETTER:  European JV REVPAR (in constant euros), excluding the Sheraton Roma, came in at 4.8% in 1Q.  Even though this is within the company's previous guidance of 3-5%, HST had mentioned that they were more conservative with the REVPAR assumptions at the corporate level. The Westin Europa & Regina in Venice, the Sheraton Warsaw, the Sheraton Skyline in London and the Paris Versailles all had double digit RevPAR increases 1Q.
  • CAPITAL RECYCLING PLAN
    • SAME:  The $48MM spent on redevelopment and ROI capital projects is on schedule with HST's plan to be an active recycler of capital in the next 2-3 years.  HST expects to spend $150-170MM in 2012 for these capital reinvestment projects.  

LIZ: Q1 Preview

 

Conclusion: There’s no change to our thesis – LIZ remains one of our top long ideas and we like it headed into the quarter.

 

 

While the stock is up 30% since the last print, we think LIZ is still trading at a significant discount and is headed higher. We expect slightly higher revenues versus the Street and a smaller loss (-$0.09 vs. -$0.13E) as well as further clarity on company fundamentals with updated brand comps through April when LIZ reports tomorrow morning. In the company’s least significant quarter, the focus will be squarely on brand performance. That said, let’s look at where the risk is heading into the quarter:

 

  1. Be mindful of the holiday impact on April comp headlines.
  2. Comp expectations at Kate is the biggest potential risk. While we don’t expect an issue here, let’s consider the following:
    • January and February results reported on the Q4 call were better than expected coming in at +30% and +16% on comps of +96% and +87% proving the brand can comp the comp. In March, Kate goes up against a less challenging +44% comp coupled with the benefit of Easter demand shift. We’d consider anything less than a mid 20s comp for the quarter a disappointment.
    • That said, April will be up against a +82% comp and then +88% in May and +56% in June. Taking the Easter pull forward out of April, a stable 2-year comp rate could produce a negative comp in April and a headline scare. Be mindful of the holiday shift as this is fully accounted for in our numbers, but might be less well accounted for in the minds of more recent investors.
  3. At Lucky, the brand reported strong mid-quarter comps up +29% and +21% on comps of -2% and +12% in Jan and Feb and then goes up against a +1% in March. We expect a mid 20s comp here as well. While April-June comps of +23%, +24%, and +16% are the toughest of the year, we expect a positive MSD comp for Q2 modeling a modestly negative comp in April. Again, this is already in our number.

With management having several opportunities to be in front of investors YTD, we think expectations for the timing of a turn in both the Juicy business as well as the reduction in corporate expenses is appropriately set as a multi-quarter process. Additionally, with new hires at both the CFO level and a co-President at Juicy during the quarter, the company is taking steps to address these lingering concerns.

 

We are at $0.25 in EPS for F12 and $0.65 in F13 reflecting $140mm and $210mm in F12 and F13 EBITDA respectively. As we move through 2012, we think investors will start looking out to $1 in earnings power in three years (F14). That still isn’t reflected in the stock at $13. While we could see some near-term volatility as the company reports over the next few quarters, we think there is at least $7+ in upside from current levels. With over 50% upside, LIZ is still one of our top ideas.

 

 

For more detail following the February print, see our note “LIZ: Noise = Buying Opportunity.

 

Casey Flavin

Director

 

LIZ: Q1 Preview - LIZ SOTP

 

 

 

 


HST 1Q CONF CALL NOTES

Quarter and guidance in-line with our expectations

 

 

CONF CALL NOTES

  • Stronger demand in higher rated segments of group and transient led to better performance in the quarter
  • Continuing a trend we saw developing in the fourth quarter of last year, our banquet and audio visual revenue grew faster than our outlet and lounge revenue, as several of our larger hotels experienced meaningful increases in banquet activity.
  • Discount segment grew 2% but government segment declined slightly
  • Group bookings for the quarter in the quarter increased 6%, leading to a more than 4% increase YoY. Corporate increased more than 6% and discount decreased 5%. 
  • Group booking for the remainder of the year are 7.5% ahead of last year's pace for the balance of the year with rate ahead by 2% YoY and recent rates achieved are 8% better. 
  • Expect to continue to see occupancy gains in 2012
  • Expect positive rate growth in 2013 as well
  • Moving quickly to bring selected assets to the market given the dearth of assets available for sale
  • They are also expecting to be a net buyer of real estate this year, but plan on being opportunitistic
  • Guidance doesn't include any additional M&A aside from whats been already announced
  • Continue to find construction pricing attractive and think that their ROI capex will be accretive
  • They are seeing very strong demand trends and with supply only increasing 0.5%, coupled with better group bookings they decided to raise their RevPAR guidance
  • Believe that this cycle will gain momentum through 2012 and continue through 2013 & 2014
  • Regional RevPAR performance and Outlook:
    • Hawaii: 15.1%. Outperformance due to strong corporate and transient. expected to underperform in 2Q but have a better 2H
    • Houston: 12.8%.  Expect to underperform in 2Q due to difficult convention comps.
    • Miami/Ft Lauderdale: 11.3%. Expected to perform well in 2Q
    • Philadelphia: 30.8% increase.  Benefited from the 2011 renovation. We expect our Philadelphia hotels to be a top performer in 2012 
    • San Francisco: 10.9%.  Strong 2Q performance is expected
    • LA: 8.5%.  Expect continued strength in 2Q 
    • Chicago: 20.3% increase (rate increased 3%). We expect our Chicago hotels to have very good performance in 2Q
    • New York: 6.5%. Results were negatively impacted by renovations in the quarter. Expect a good 2Q
    • D.C.: -3.9%.  Lower levels of citywide demand lead to poor performance.  2012 will be a challenge due to a weaker city-wide calendar, government travel cutbacks, and the lack of legislative activity. 2Q was better than 1Q though. 
    • San Antonio: Down 8% (worst market). Better results expected in 2Q but will continue to underperform
    • European JV:  Excluding Sheraton Roma, constant Euro RevPAR increased 4.8%. F&B revenues also increased 4.5%. 1Q JV results only include Jan and Feb.  In March RevPAR was up 6.2%. 
  • F&B flowthrough was ~35%
  • Continue to see improvements in catering, leading room rental and audio visual revenues. 
  • SG&A, marketing, repairs/maintenance expense increased 4.4%  driven by variable expenses (credit card commissions, reward programs and shared service allocations.) 
  • Utility costs benefited from weather and declined over 3%. Property taxes increased 3.6%, property insurance increased nearly 15%. 
  • Expect rate to be a bigger contributor to RevPAR growth for the balance of 2012, which will help flowthrough
  • 2 & 4Q should especially benefit from strong F&B business with good flowthrough
  • Expect un-allocated cost to increase more than inflation particularly for sales and marketing where higher revenues will increased cost. 
  • Expect property taxes to increase roughly 8%, the utilities to increase between 1% and 2% for the year

Q&A

  • Group booking room nights were up 13% vs. 7% at the same time last year for the remainder of the year
  • For the full year their group revenues on the books are up over 8%, which is much stronger than were they were in the first quarter. Over 7% is due to occupancy and a few % due to rate
  • Booking pace starting the year was up around 5%, now for the full year is much higher.  The reason its higher is because they booked more rooms in the quarter for the quarter and in the quarter for the rest of the year compared to last year
  • They are a  little surprised at how fast occupancy has returned to peak. Staffing levels lower relative to 2007 and 2009, and based on their numbers staffing levels have come back with managerial levels slower though.  However, they are still below where they were in the past. They are being thoughtful in how they add staff back. Productivity levels are better than they were in prior recoveries
  • D.C. is expected to be stronger than the first quarter. Expect flatish RevPAR going forward
  • If there are portfolio coming on the market they will definitely get a call on those and take a look. That isn't their sweet spot though. There still is a pricing expectation gap between sellers and buyers. 
  • Part of the reason that people think that there will be a pick up in M&A in 2H12 is because there is debt maturing and lenders are no longer extending and pretending.  
  • Their larger hotels vs. smaller hotels are in roughly the same position vs. prior peak. Larger hotels are doing better on rate but behind in occupancy. The larger hotels are seeing less of their business coming from Group than they have in the past. Do see bigger increases in the smaller hotels then their larger hotels, similar to Marriott.  The smaller hotels tend to book a lot more of their rooms closer in
  • Association business and corporate business is better. Association are looking into holding bigger events in the future which should benefit those larger hotels
  • Don't expect many hotels to come to market in Europe unless their is debt maturity. They will be cautious in investing in Europe.  Feel better about Northern Europe. Over 40% of their business in Europe comes from outside of Europe and the UK
  • Their Marriott hotels have certain had a surge in booking activity over the last 6 months.  Part of that can be due to fixing some of the salesforce one bugs
  • Their European debt investment matures this quarter. The owners are marketing the portfolio for sale.  They are closely monitoring the situation
  • There is nothing that they see now that would suggest that they should see a deceleration in Europe. But they remain cautious. However, DC is improving off of 1Q levels. 
  • In certain markets they are able to push banquet pricing with Groups. However, they are a little ways away from being able to push the envelope on event banquet spending. There are a number of Groups that are outspending their guarantees at the very last minute. They have been beating more than missing their F&B forecasts for Groups
  • European JV guidance: They are seeing strength in their European JV. Their revised forecast for Europe takes in the outperformance from 1Q but they are being reallly conservative and assuming flat RevPAR for the balance.
  • They still feel really good about F&B but are more cautious on other revenues. Expect F&B to grow slightly less then RevPAR but not much less.  Other is also less profitable
  • Helmsley budget has increased slightly, but the increase is really due to a reconfiguration of the hotel F&B area. They are also going to accelerate the work at Hyatt in 2012 before the NAREIT event in November. 
  • They are already seeing the benefit of newer bookings at higher rates. 80% of their room nights for 2012 are on the books (for group). They started the year at about 70%. In 2010 they only had 20% of their group business was on the books and that's when things started to improve. In 2013, almost 80% of their business would have been booked in 2011 and beyond
  • Altanta was really healthy and expect an even better 2Q with the 2H comparable to 1Q.  
  • M&A capital is more available. Its not clear that capital is really available for go private like transactions they saw through 2006-2007.  Thinks that more of it is company to company deals where there are strategic syngeries. Usually at the half way point of a recovery, M&A starts to pick up. However, its not clear that they are there yet. 
  • Most of the branded hotels would like to be more asset light, but they also don't need the money so they are very selective on sales. 
  • Because this has been a transient lead  recovery, its been hard to get aggressive on rates. 

 

 

HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE RELEASE

  • 2012 guidance:
    • RevPAR: raised by 1% to 5-7%
    • EBITDA raised $20-30MM to $1,120-1,165MM
      • Consensus is at $1,125MM
    • Adj FFO raised by 4 cents to $0.99 to $1.06
      • Consensus is at $1.03
  • Consistent with the Company's expectations, the completion of the 2011 rooms and meeting space renovations at the Philadelphia Downtown Marriott led to outstanding results in the first quarter, with RevPAR for the hotel up over 50% when compared to the first quarter of 2011. The improved results for this hotel accounted for approximately 80 basis points of the Company's comparable hotel RevPAR growth
  • On a calendar quarter basis, which includes the March results for these hotels, as well as eight additional days of March for the Company's Marriott hotels, comparable hotel RevPAR increased 6.4% compared to the first calendar quarter of 2011.
  • ROI capex of $48MM in 1Q12. During the first quarter, the Company substantially completed the redevelopment of the Chicago Marriott O'Hare, Atlanta Marriott Perimeter Center and 95,000 square feet of meeting space at the San Diego Marriott Marquis & Marina. The Company expects that its investment in ROI expenditures for 2012 will total approximately $150 million to $170 million.
  • During the first quarter of 2012, the Company delivered the first few floors of newly renovated guestrooms at the New York Helmsley and completed the renovation of the 270 rooms at the W New York - Union Square, which was acquired in late 2010. The Company spent approximately $14 million on acquisition projects in the first quarter of 2012 and expects to invest between $100 million and $110 million for 2012.
  • $100 million in renewal and replacement expenditures spent in 1Q12. Major renewal and replacement projects completed during the first quarter included the renovation of 743 guestrooms at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island and the Pentagon City Residence Inn and almost 10,500 square feet of meeting space at the W New York. The Company expects that renewal and replacement expenditures for 2012 will total approximately $300 million to $330 million.
  • On March 23, 2012, the Company sold the 685-room San Francisco Airport Marriott for a sale price of $108 million plus $5 million for the furniture, fixture and equipment replacement fund and recorded a gain of approximately $48 million
  • In 1Q12, HST issued ~11.1MM shares at an average price of $15.67per share, for net proceeds of approximately $172 million. On April 24, 2012, the Company entered into comparable Sales Agency Financing Agreements with BNY Mellon Capital Markets, LLC and Scotiabank for a new at-the-market equity offering program with a capacity of $400 million.
  • On March 6, 2012, the joint venture in Asia ("Asia/Pacific JV"), in which the Company holds a 25% interest, acquired the 278-room Citigate Perth in Perth, Australia for A$61 million. In connection with the acquisition, the Company drew A$14.4 million on its credit facility. The Asia/Pacific JV expects to invest approximately A$17 million to upgrade and rebrand the hotel as a Four Points by Sheraton.

Hedgeye Statistics

The total percentage of successful long and short trading signals since the inception of Real-Time Alerts in August of 2008.

  • LONG SIGNALS 80.64%
  • SHORT SIGNALS 78.61%

HOT YOUTUBE

In preparation for HOT's FQ2 2012 earnings release tomorrow morning, we’ve put together the recent pertinent forward looking company commentary.

 

 

Raymond James Institutional Investors Conference March 5

  • "Our long-term target is to be at least 80% fee-driven, which means continuing to grow out our fee business around the globe, as well as continuing to sell assets, shrink that own portfolio and monetize some of the inventory we have at Vacation Ownership, which has been a meaningful cash contributor to the company."
  • "We made some big changes to our SPG program that we think will allow us to lengthen our lead versus competing programs. You saw this with innovation such as allowing 24-hour check-in for our most elite members. What this means is when you fly over to Europe and land at 7:00 in the morning, you can check into that property that morning and have a 24-hour stay rather than having to pay for two nights for that true one-night stay." 
  • "75% of our revenues are driven by the business traveler."
  • [Fees] "Today... almost 60% non-U.S... and longer-term, we'd like to be at least 80% non-U.S. It shouldn't surprise you that when you look at our pipeline, 85% of our pipeline is going to be built in markets outside of the U.S."
  • "So, supply growth is very low today and with very few signings for new hotels over the last four years and a three-year gestation period from when you sign a hotel until that hotel opens. We would anticipate that there will be a limited supply through at least 2014 and increasingly as we move through 2012, 2015 looks to be a benign environment as well."
  • [REVPAR] "We expect mid to high single-digit growth in 2012. You would need 2013 to grow at a similar level just to get back to nominal RevPAR that you had in 2007, but you've had six years of inflation over that time period."
  • "Without the new supply coming in, you would expect to see a potential scenario where demand is in excess of supply, and you can either grow occupancy with rate or trade up some of those occupancy gains to keep pushing rate until you got back to prior peak margins."
  • "Occupancies at our owned hotels are actually back to prior peak levels. For the system, we're still running a few hundred basis points below where we were in 2007. But, these types of occupancies are high enough that you're able to drive compression in the hotels and be pretty aggressive about pushing rate, and we've been pushing rate hard. 
  • "We're focused on growing SG&A roughly in-line with inflation, any additional SG&A growth will be driven by investments in select markets like Asia-Pacific where we need that growth to support our rapid unit growth."

Youtube from Q4 Conference Call

  • "The impact of renovations and asset sales is most significant in Q1, a drag of almost $5 million. Also business conditions in Canada and Europe are sluggish right now. Our outlook assumes some improvement as the year progresses. As such, owned EBITDA is depressed in the first quarter. SG&A growth in Q1 will also be higher by $5 million than the full year run rate of 3% to 5% would suggest. This is due to some items in 2011 SG&A which were non-recurring."
  • "We set a company record for new rooms added to our system, a record we aim to beat again in 2012." 
  • [Vacation Ownership segment] "We have several years of inventory left to monetize and our team is looking at capital-friendly and high return ways to maintain our sales pace."
  • "Our baseline scenario for 2012 targets REVPAR growth of 5% to 7%, which would translate into full year EBITDA of $1.06 billion to $1.09 billion, and that excludes $80 million from Bal Harbour. REVPAR will continue to be driven by growing demand. Quite frankly, I have yet to see a big customer who says they'll travel less this year than last year. Just like in 2011, our core customers – professional firms, tech, healthcare, and financial services, are profitable, have record cash on hand, and are scouring the world in search of growth." 
  • "We have limited our cash exposure to the euro and Eurozone banks to the extent we can. As we have for the past several years, we have hedged approximately half our euro earnings exposure at $1.44 this year. We're holding the line on our hotel and above-hotel costs, and preparing contingency plans. Since most of our European regional overhead is also euro-denominated, our net earnings exposure to the euro is only 9%."
  • "Our baseline scenario assumes that China and Asia will remain the engines of our owned growth in 2012, that trends we are currently seeing will be sustained through the year. A strong China helps commodity producers in Latin America, which was our fastest growing region in the fourth quarter. These trends are continuing." 
  • "We are optimistic that U.S. travel will return to Mexican resorts in 2012. We are seeing significant renewed interest in Mexico from U.S. groups. We have also looked the possibility of a devaluation in Argentina and what our response would be. Our baseline scenario assumes another year of robust growth in Latin America."
  • "We expect that 2012 will be a year of steady but unspectacular growth in the U.S....we expect a sequential slowdown from last year's 9% REVPAR growth rate."
  • "With around 80% of bids accepted, corporate negotiated rates are up in the mid to high single digits. Lead volumes are up, as is average lead size."
  • "Booking windows continue to lengthen. Group rates are rising. Group pace for 2012 is in the mid single digits. They're up even more in 2013 and 2014 [close to double-digit increases]. Transient momentum remains steady and strong. With occupancies approaching peak levels across the system, rate will remain the key variable to drive REVPAR in 2012."
  • "The underlying rationale for our baseline scenario of company-operated global REVPAR growth of 5% to 7% in local currency. We expect Asia and Latin America to be at or above the high end of the range, North America to be in the middle of the range, and Europe, Africa, and the Middle East to be below the low end of the range... The dollar will be a headwind based on current exchange rates, pulling dollar REVPAR down by 200 basis points."
  • "The Shanghai effect is behind us and Thailand has recovered, so current business momentum is in line with the high end of our outlook range. Also post March, we will benefit from comparisons in North Africa and Japan. In the latter part of the year, comparisons get easier in Europe. As such, the low end of our 2012 outlook range allows for a further slowdown in Europe and knock-on effects elsewhere."
  • "On the owned hotel front, local currency REVPAR will be lower by 4% to 6%, and a further 200 basis points lower as reported in dollars.  34% of our owned EBITDA was derived from Canada and Europe in 2011. These markets will be a drag on same-store owned margin improvement and EBITDA growth."
  • "We have some significant renovations underway in 2012 including the shutdown of The Gritti Palace, the Maria Cristina, and the Clarion at San Francisco Airport. Also under renovation in 2012 will be the Westin Peachtree, the Sheraton Rio, and The Westin Maui, among others. Our total owned EBITDA will be impacted approximately $10 million by 2012 renovations and the hotels we sold in 2011. Also across our hotel business, exchange rates shift negatively impact 2012 EBITDA by approximately $7 million, net of benefits from our euro hedge."
  • "We continue to hold the line on SG&A costs, which will increase only 3% to 5%. More than 70% of the year-over-year increase comes from Asia and Latin America, where we continue to build infrastructure to support the realization of our large pipeline. In the developed world, our goal remains to hold costs as close to flat as possible."
  • "In our Vacation Ownership business, trends remain stable. We will continue to focus on generating cash. We are targeting another $125 million in cash flow from this business in 2012, which includes the securitization late in the year. EBITDA will be roughly flat. To sustain the business, we are making selective investments in new inventory in tried and tested locations, generally where proven sales momentum warrants adding more warranty. Our baseline scenario is expected to deliver 2012 EBITDA of $1.06 million to $1.09 billion, not inclusive of income from Bal Harbour residential sales. Each point of REVPAR impacts EBITDA by approximately $15 million."
  • [Bal Harbour]"Closings will be front loaded as we work through the contracts that have already been signed. Our sales team feels very good about current sales momentum. The buyer base remains largely non-U.S., particularly Latin American. Sales to date have averaged over $1,300 per square foot. We have been able to steadily raise prices after sales were relaunched. The project is coming in on time and under budget. Our baseline scenario assumes at least $80 million in EBITDA from Bal Harbour condo closings and at least $250 million in net cash." 
  • "Including our Bal Harbour condo sales, baseline EBITDA ranges from $1.14 billion to $1.17 billion."
  • "Baseline EPS for 2012 ranges from $2.22 to $2.33. Interest expense is expected to be $212 million. Reduction in interest expense from the paydown of debt is offset by interest that is no longer capitalized for the Bal Harbour project. This is why our reported interest expense does not decline as much as you might have expected. Our cash interest expense will in fact be almost $50 million lower."
  • "Our estimated tax rate for 2012 is approximately 30%. This is higher than our normalized rate of 26% last year. The increase is largely attributable to the 38.6% GAAP tax rate on Bal Harbour income. It is important to note that there will be no cash taxes paid on Bal Harbour income since we have tax credits we are utilizing. Cash taxes in 2012 will be approximately $100 million."
  • "We are stepping up capital spending in the hotel business on several major renovations as described previously. We are continuing investment to build our technology capabilities and drive our pipeline. Capital expenditure will be up $125 million to $575 million in 2012, $200 million in maintenance and IT capital, and $375 million in ROI projects. Despite the step-up in capital spending, we expect to generate at least $300 million in operating cash flow. 
  • "As always, we are not including any asset sales on our outlook. We remain a seller of hotels where we can realize the values we want."
  • "We feel good about the New York market. We don't know that it will necessarily lead REVPAR and rate growth in North America, but we don't think it's going to be soft either."
  • "We're holding the line on costs with our Lean operations initiative and a variety of other programs. So you should assume that the cost growth is curtailed."
  • "Tour flows, conversion rates, pricing all moving in the right direction. Delinquencies likewise going down, and so there's a return to a much more stable pattern."

Short Selling Opportunity: SP500 Levels, Refreshed

POSITION: Long Utilities (XLU), Short Basic Materials (XLB), Industrials (XLI) and SPY

 

Our levels and process have not changed. Prices, Volumes, and Volatilities have. Provided that the US Dollar doesn’t breakout above $80, I think Oil prices remain sticky and growth continues to slow.

 

Across our core risk management durations, here are the lines that matter most: 

  1. Immediate-term TRADE resistance = 1394
  2. Immediate-term TRADE support = 1377
  3. Intermediate-term TREND support = 1349 

In other words, we’re at the top end of my immediate-term range and that makes this a Short Selling Opportunity.

 

Manage the risk of the range.

KM

 

Keith R. McCullough
Chief Executive Officer

 

Short Selling Opportunity: SP500 Levels, Refreshed - SPX


Notable Short Interest Changes

Both Nike and FINL were among the biggest increases in short interest over the past two weeks. But we like both into increasing pessimism.

 

Both Nike and FINL were among the biggest increases in short interest over the past two weeks. Nike sentiment remains quite positive (see our sentiment indicator) – but the fact that short interest has stopped coming down is a callout.  FINL remains in the ‘management credibility penalty box’ after last quarter’s miss. But we like it into increasing pessimism.

 

Notable Short Interest Changes - short interest changes

 

Notable Short Interest Changes - NKE sentiment

 

Notable Short Interest Changes - FINL sentiment


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