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The following is a list of highly shorted stocks. All the stocks mentioned below have short floats higher than 20%.

In addition, all of these stocks have a large number of open put option positions relative to call option positions, i.e. bearish options market sentiment.

Is this excessive pessimism justfied--what do you think? If you're a contrarian, these trends might raise a flag. Full details below.

Options data sourced from Schaeffer's, short float and performance data sourced from Finviz.

Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the top six stocks mentioned below. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research. Note: The numbers on top of items represent the forward P/E ratio, if available.

The list has been sorted by the Put/Call ratio.

1. CVB Financial Corp. (NASDAQ:CVBF): Regional Banks Industry. Market cap of $884.43M. Call open interest at 1,861 contracts vs. put open interest at 25,809 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 13.87). Short float at 22.82%, which implies a short ratio of 30.54 days. The stock has lost -12.11% over the last year.

2. PetMed Express Inc. (NASDAQ:PETS): Drug Delivery Industry. Market cap of $355.6M. Call open interest at 789 contracts vs. put open interest at 4,009 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 5.08). Short float at 31.55%, which implies a short ratio of 32.03 days. The stock has lost -12.35% over the last year.

3. Allegiant Travel Company (NASDAQ:ALGT): Regional Airlines Industry. Market cap of $913.05M. Call open interest at 755 contracts vs. put open interest at 2,828 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 3.75). Short float at 25.78%, which implies a short ratio of 16.81 days. The stock has lost -2.91% over the last year.

4. Lumber Liquidators Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:LL): Home Improvement Stores Industry. Market cap of $723.34M. Call open interest at 1,265 contracts vs. put open interest at 4,297 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 3.4). Short float at 22.43%, which implies a short ratio of 12.97 days. The stock has gained 3.09% over the last year.

5. Saks Incorporated (NYSE:SKS): Department Stores Industry. Market cap of $1.86B. Call open interest at 22,693 contracts vs. put open interest at 67,760 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.99). Short float at 21.93%, which implies a short ratio of 6.96 days. The stock has gained 60.17% over the last year.

6. Quality Systems Inc. (NASDAQ:QSII): Healthcare Information Services Industry. Market cap of $2.13B. Call open interest at 1,707 contracts vs. put open interest at 5,073 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.97). Short float at 29.74%, which implies a short ratio of 27.76 days. The stock has gained 15.75% over the last year.

7. Alliance Data Systems Corporation (NYSE:ADS): Credit Services Industry. Market cap of $3.76B. Call open interest at 9,050 contracts vs. put open interest at 25,694 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.84). Short float at 36.73%, which implies a short ratio of 20.67 days. The stock has gained 8.37% over the last year.

8. World Acceptance Corp. (NASDAQ:WRLD): Credit Services Industry. Market cap of $864.19M. Call open interest at 899 contracts vs. put open interest at 2,353 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.62). Short float at 26.19%, which implies a short ratio of 23.8 days. The stock has gained 41.7% over the last year.

9. W&T Offshore Inc. (NYSE:WTI): Oil & Gas Drilling & Exploration Industry. Market cap of $1.37B. Call open interest at 3,293 contracts vs. put open interest at 8,325 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.53). Short float at 29.53%, which implies a short ratio of 10.43 days. The stock has gained 57.82% over the last year.

10. DSW Inc. (NYSE:DSW): Apparel Stores Industry. Market cap of $1.55B. Call open interest at 2,204 contracts vs. put open interest at 5,243 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.38). Short float at 27.51%, which implies a short ratio of 10.81 days. The stock has gained 35.22% over the last year.

11. P.F. Chang's China Bistro, Inc. (NASDAQ:PFCB): Restaurants Industry. Market cap of $1.09B. Call open interest at 4,246 contracts vs. put open interest at 9,230 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.17). Short float at 27.23%, which implies a short ratio of 13.27 days. The stock has gained 25.28% over the last year.

12. Clearwire Corporation (CLWR): Wireless Communications Industry. Market cap of $5.59B. Call open interest at 27,073 contracts vs. put open interest at 58,000 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.14). Short float at 18.33%, which implies a short ratio of 8.24 days. The stock has lost -27.03% over the last year.

13. Bridgepoint Education, Inc. (NYSE:BPI): Education & Training Services Industry. Market cap of $866.85M. Call open interest at 4,672 contracts vs. put open interest at 9,589 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.05). Short float at 18.81%, which implies a short ratio of 21.98 days. The stock has gained 11.19% over the last year.

14. Cavium Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ:CAVM): Semiconductor Industry. Market cap of $2.B. Call open interest at 14,877 contracts vs. put open interest at 30,228 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 2.03). Short float at 20.75%, which implies a short ratio of 7.99 days. The stock has gained 88.92% over the last year.

15. Synaptics Inc. (NASDAQ:SYNA): Computer Peripherals Industry. Market cap of $1.07B. Call open interest at 18,295 contracts vs. put open interest at 36,437 contracts (Put/Call ratio at 1.99). Short float at 26.95%, which implies a short ratio of 13.44 days. The stock has gained 2.01% over the last year.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

Source: 15 Highly Shorted Stocks With Bearish Options Sentiment