Short selling activity increased in Q1 2009, yet remains well below the 2008 peak, despite the recent market turmoil, according to the Data Explorers Securities Lending Index (DESLI®).
All DESLI indices bar one rose since the start of this year, inferring a climb in short interest levels. DESLI indices have generally been trading well below 2008 heights, while the DESLI US 30 index, which is predominantly made up of Pharmaceutical, Oil and Computer companies is now down 19% since hitting the new high on March 23, an indication of how stock market volatility is affecting the short interest market.
DESLI Asia (ex Japan) is the only index to fall since the start of the year, hitting a 52-week low of 53.15 on March 31. The index has almost halved since January 2008. DESLI indices track the change in securities lending as a percentage of shares outstanding on loan, acting as a true proxy for short interest and providing investors with much-needed clarity in an opaque market. Continued market volatility will have an impact on short-selling - only the Data Explorers DESLI indices can report changes in the short market on a daily basis.
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This chart documents the DESLI Global 50 - Year in Review: