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What is ShortableStocks?

ShortableStocks was started as an attempt to help level the playing field for the small trader navigating the stock market. Individual traders are almost always at a disadvantage because of the asymmetric availability of information. Shortable stock information is a small piece of this information disadvantage, but for small-cap stocks it can have an outsized influence. Being aware of the availability of shortable shares and the cost to borrow those shares can often mean the difference between a winning and a losing trade.

Enter a ticker symbol to see the number of shortable shares available and the cost to borrow those shares. This information is updated every 15 minutes during each market day and is free for everyone.

Why are you here?

You are more than likely here because one or more of the stocks you hold has been heavily shorted. This is very common in the small-cap universe and in sectors like biotech. Yes, there are instances where huge gains can be made in these areas, but those cases are relatively rare. Hedge funds take advantage of exactly these types of stocks for several reasons.
  • They are relatively unknown and not widely followed on Wall Street.
  • They tend to be largely held by retail investors who lack the deep financial resources and patience to withstand regular bear raids.
  • There is little regulation and even less enforcement of this seedy underbelly of the market.

    What can you do?

    There are several things you can do to improve your trading performance. It is cliche, but you have to be able to trade without emotion. Most of the worst trading decisions are made because of fear: fear of missing out and fear of losing money. Whatever trading strategy you use needs to be able to make trading decisions unemotionally. The best strategies tend to be the ones that produce predictable and consistent gains time and again.

    Our Trading System

    With the spirit of levelling the playing field for the small investor we have created a proprietary trading system. (OK, well, also because we want to make money and we actively use the system to trade as well.) The idea is to steer people toward stocks that tend to perform best over time with more predictability and fewer harrowing drawdowns. We have developed this system over the course of many years and have subjected it to rigorous backtesting and statistical analysis. No system is perfect, and we certainly don't claim perfection, but our results speak for themselves.

    We performed a rigorous statistical analysis on our trading system. We bootstrapped 1000 instances using 20, 30, and 40 random stocks from the S&P 500 list and calculated maximum drawdown from inception (1990). Below are the results of these tests:

    20 random stocks bootstrapped 1000 times
    Leverage:None
    Annualized return:24.12%
    Average maximum drawdown for entire portfolio:29.31%
    Standard deviation:6.61
    95% Confidence Interval:16.35, 42.27


    30 random stocks bootstrapped 1000 times
    Leverage:None
    Annualized return:24.16%
    Average maximum drawdown for entire portfolio:27.13%
    Standard deviation:5.02
    95% Confidence Interval:17.28, 36.98


    40 random stocks bootstrapped 1000 times
    Leverage:None
    Annualized return:24.15%
    Average maximum drawdown for entire portfolio:26.14%
    Standard deviation:4.19
    95% Confidence Interval:17.93, 34.35


    Furthermore, we tested an equal weighting of $10,000 invested in every S&P 500 stock as it's presently constituted (there are 504 stocks currently on this list). All gains were considered to be reinvested.

    The importance of all this is that there is safety in numbers. Even during the depths of the great financial crisis of 2008 a diversified portfolio using our system still performed well. There are no future guarantees, of course, but this exercise helps to give you an idea of what to expect in terms of performance and drawdown. Drawdown is calculated from every new all-time high.

    How does it work?

    The trading system is a black box. It generates trading signals for stocks at the close of every market day for trades to be placed the following market day at the open. Subscribers get these daily signals for up to 50 stocks at a time. Consider giving our trading system a try. We think your results will be dramatically improved.

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