Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY), the giftware, health and beauty care specialists, has seen a decline in the percentage of its shares on loan since March 2: down from 12% of the company then to just under 10% now. This is ahead of the S&P500 listed company's earnings announcement on Tuesday. Utilisation, or the percentage of the available supply of the company out on loan to short investors, has also come down, from 44% on February 2nd to 34% now. On Friday of last week there were 3.7m shares traded compared to the company's three-month average of 1.8m. This short covering could be an indicator that the market is expecting good news from the company. Bloggingstocks.com, however, reported that the market is not expecting any earnings growth and that the decline could be as severe as 33% if the retailer matches expectations; but, the good news is that BBBY actually 'has a decent history in terms of beating Wall Street expectations.' BBBY's colleagues include Wal-Mart (WMT) and Target (TGT).
Below is a chart documenting BBBY's shares on loan (blue line) vs the price (purple):
WMT has also seen a decline in the amount of its shares on loan, despite this figure remaining under 1% over the last three months:
It is the same story for TGT, whose short interest has declined from a higher figure of 6% in late January to 2.4% now: