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4 Financial Stocks With Dangerously High Short Interest

GameStop (NYSE: GME), AMC Entertainment (NYSE: AMC), and a few others were the primary targets of the recent short squeeze phenomenon, but they aren't the only stocks hedge funds and other big investors are betting against. There are four financial sector stocks in particular that have an unusually high level of short interest as well. In this Fool Live video clip, recorded on Feb. 8, contributor Matt Frankel, CFP, and Industry Focus host Jason Moser discuss the financial short-seller targets and why big investors might have a negative outlook.

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Matt Frankel: These are the financials that investors are betting against. This is in descending order. Number one is Rocket Mortgage (NYSE: RKT). 37% short interest. Thirty-seven percent of the float is sold short right now. Number two, Lemonade (NYSE: LMND). Our favorite insurance player here, over 22%.

Jason Moser: Twenty-two? Wow.

Frankel: Over 22% is sold short. Like you said, there could be a legitimate short case to be made. I mean, Lemonade is not a cheap stock.

Moser: Yeah.

Frankel: Just like (NYSE: BILL) they have a high valuation, so people might be betting against it. One important lesson I learned in investing is if you can't understand the other case, if you're a bull, if you can't understand the bear case of something, you haven't done enough research yet.

Moser: That's good.

Matt Frankel: Number three is a company called Credit Acceptance (NASDAQ: CACC). Ticker symbol is CACC. They provide financing for auto dealerships. They're a subprime auto financer. Their short interest is about 19%. Number four is Voya Financial (NYSE: VOYA). I don't know if you're familiar with Voya, Jason.

Moser: I'm not.

Frankel: You remember a company called ING?

Moser: Yeah, absolutely.

Frankel: That's what ING turned into.

Moser: Ahh, OK, I got you.

Frankel: ING used to be at, where was it? Switzerland? I think it was based somewhere in Europe. They spun off their North American operations into Voya. So they're investments, retirement, ING had a thing called ShareBuilder that was really popular. They were one of the original high-yield savings accounts online.

Moser: I do remember ShareBuilder being Voya.

Frankel: Yeah. Those still exist in one form or another under Voya's banner. All four of those are very heavily bet against. Rocket by far is number one.

Moser: Yeah, that seems a bit. Wow, that's such a big market opportunity, and Rocket seems to have such brand identity in that space. That seems to be a risky one. I mean, valuation is so squishy and so subjective. I mean, it is much art as it is science. Then what's that old saying? The market can remain irrational much longer than you can remain solvent.

Frankel: That's absolutely true. With Rocket, my gut feeling is that, like we said last week, the mortgage market has been extraordinarily great over the past year. Interest rates were low, everyone is refinancing, everyone is buying houses, home prices are going up. Maybe people are just betting that that's not going to last forever.

Jason Moser owns shares of Holdings, Inc. Matthew Frankel, CFP owns shares of Lemonade, Inc. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Lemonade, Inc. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


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