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Because of the recent economic turmoil, most investors are bearish about the market, thus betting against the market by increasing their short positions. Although the overall market, specially the financial sector, performed poorly this year, there are still a few stocks experienced decreasing short interest, indicating that the majority of the investors is getting increasingly optimistic about these stocks.

Below, we compiled a list of 16 financial stocks with declining short interest. The market data are sourced from Fidelity. All companies in this list have at least 1% open interest and short interest declined over the past month. These stocks are in the financial sector and have at least $6 billion in market cap.

Company Name

Symbol

Open Interest

Change in Short Interest

YTD Return

MOODY'S CORP.

(MCO)

10.25%

-7.96%

23.75%

AVALONBAY

(AVB)

9.20%

-2.40%

16.07%

EQUITY RESIDENTIAL

(EQR)

4.47%

-1.04%

12.04%

HEALTH CARE REIT

(HCN)

6.05%

-0.35%

10.35%

MACERICH CO (THE)

(MAC)

4.78%

-12.47%

3.02%

PLUM CREEK TIMBER

(PCL)

8.91%

-5.14%

0.78%

KIMCO REALTY CORP

(KIM)

4.44%

-0.47%

-6.00%

WEYERHAEUSER CO

(WY)

4.41%

-9.47%

-7.96%

CREDICORP LTD

(BAP)

1.22%

-11.58%

-13.99%

PNC FINANCIAL SERV.

(PNC)

1.86%

-4.39%

-15.35%

GENERAL GROWTH PR

(GGP)

1.73%

-8.63%

-18.16%

TD AMERITRADE

(AMTD)

1.75%

-13.17%

-19.85%

CIT GROUP INC

(CIT)

1.95%

-28.78%

-25.37%

STATE STREET CORP

(STT)

1.43%

-7.81%

-27.10%

HARTFORD FINANCIAL

(HIG)

4.81%

-2.76%

-30.95%

AIG

(AIG)

1.20%

-8.99%

-47.70%

Moody’s Corp (MCO): Moody’s is a provider of credit ratings. MCO has an open interest of 10.25%, and its short interest declined 7.96% last month. It has a market cap of $7.5B, a P/E ratio of 12.1, and gained 23.75% since the beginning of this year. Warren Buffett had $1 billion invested in MCO shares (check out Buffett’s top stock picks).

Avalonbay Communities Inc (AVB): AvalonBay Communities, Inc. is a real estate investment trust. AVB has an open interest of 9.20%, and its short interest declined 2.40% last month. It has a market cap of $12.2B, a P/E ratio of 95.5, and gained 16.07% since the beginning of this year. Ken Heebner invested $97 million in AVB (check out Heebner’s top stock picks).

Equity Residential (EQR): Equity Residential is a real estate investment trust focusing on the acquisition, development and management of apartment properties in United States markets. EQR has an open interest of 4.47%, and its short interest declined 1.04% last month. It has a market cap of $17.1B and gained 12.04% since the beginning of this year. Ken Heebner invested nearly $100 million in EQR.

Health Care REIT Inc (HCN): Health Care REIT, Inc. is a real estate investment trust engaged in senior housing and health care real estate. HCN has an open interest of 6.05%, and its short interest declined 0.35% last month. It has a market cap of $9.1B, a P/E ratio of 229.6, and gained 10.35% since the beginning of this year. Jacob Gottlieb’s Visium Asset Management invested $42 million in HCN.

Macerich Co (MAC): The Macerich Company is involved in the acquisition, ownership, development, redevelopment, management, and leasing of regional and community shopping centers located throughout the United States. MAC has an open interest of 4.78%, and its short interest declined 12.47% last month. It has a market cap of $6.9B, a P/E ratio of 471.5, and gained 3.02% since the beginning of this year. Ken Heebner invested $81 million in MAC shares.

Plum Creek Timber (PCL): Plum Creek Timber Company, Inc. is a private timberland owner in the United States. PCL has an open interest of 8.91%, and its short interest declined 5.14% last month. It has a market cap of $6.0B, a P/E ratio of 34.2, and gained 0.78% since the beginning of this year. Jean-Marie Eveillard invested over $200 million in PCL stocks.

Kimco Realty Corp (KIM): Kimco is a self-administered real estate investment trust. KIM has an open interest of 4.44%, and its short interest declined 0.47% last month. It has a market cap of $6.9B, a P/E ratio of 110.4, and lost 6.00% since the beginning of this year. Phill Gross and Robert Atchinson had $11 million KIM stocks.

Weyerhaeuser Co (WY): Weyerhaeuser Company is a forest products company. WY has an open interest of 4.41%, and its short interest declined 9.47% last month. It has a market cap of $9.6B, a P/E ratio of 4.3, and lost 7.96% since the beginning of this year. John Paulson invested $656 million in WY (check out Paulson’s top stock picks).

Credicorp Ltd (BAP): Credicorp is engaged in banking, insurance, pension funds, and brokerage. BAP has an open interest of 1.22%, and its short interest declined 11.58% last month. It has a market cap of $8.0B, a P/E ratio of 12.6, and lost 13.99% since the beginning of this year. Rob Citrone invested $88 million in BAP.

PNC Financial Services Group Inc (PNC): PNC is engaged in retail banking, corporate and institutional banking, asset management, and residential mortgage banking. PNC has an open interest of 1.86%, and its short interest declined 4.39% last month. It has a market cap of $27.0B, a P/E ratio of 8/0, and lost 15.35% since the beginning of this year. Ken Fisher invested $363 million in PNC shares (check out Fisher’s top stock picks).

Source: 16 Financial Stocks With Declining Short Interest