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Another earnings short-squeeze candidate is enterprise cloud computing and social enterprise solutions provider
CRM), which is set to release numbers on Thursday after the market close. Wall Street analysts, on average, expect Salesforce.com to report revenue of $887.08 million on earnings of 10 cents per share.
Just recently, Stephens said its channel checks indicate Salesforce.com will report first quarter results ahead of Wall Street consensus expectations. The firm believes the company's pipeline of growth is meaningfully ahead of estimates and keeps an overweight rating on the stock with a $55 price target.
The current short interest as a percentage of the float for Salesforce.com is pretty high at 9.2%. That means that out of the 540.31 million shares in the tradable float, 49.86 million shares are sold short by the bears. The bears have also been increasing their bets from the last reporting period by 276.1%, or by about 36.60 million shares. If the bears are caught pressing their bets into a strong quarter, then shares of CRM could easily explode higher post-earnings.
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From a technical perspective, CRM is currently trending above both its 50-day and 200-day moving averages, which is bullish. This stock has been uptrending strong for the last month and change, with shares soaring higher from its low of $39.75 to its recent high of $47.58 a share. During that uptrend, shares of CRM have been consistently making higher lows and higher highs, which is bullish technical price action. That move has now pushed shares of CRM within range of triggering a major breakout trade post-earnings.
If you're bullish on CRM, then I would wait until after its report and look for long-biased trades if this stock manages to break out above its 52-week high at $47.58 a share with high volume. Look for volume on that move that hits near or above its three-month average action of 6.25 million shares. If we get that breakout, then CRM will set up to enter new 52-week high territory, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $55 to $60 a share.
I would avoid CRM or look for short-biased trades if after earnings it fails to trigger that breakout, and then drops back below some key near-term support levels at $45 to $44 a share with high volume. If we get that move, then CRM will set up to re-test or possibly take out its 50-day moving average at $42.94 a share. Any high-volume move below $42.94 will then put $42 to its 200-day moving average at $40.45 into range for shares of CRM.