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One sector that has turned up some high short interest is the industrial goods sector, which includes everything from aerospace to building materials to farm machinery to manufactured housing to waste management.

The primary metric for measuring short interest is the short ratio, which is the number of days it would take for short-sellers to cover their bearish positions, based on the recent daily volume of shares traded. The short ratio can be used to find short-squeeze plays, whereby on any unexpected good news, a stock that is heavily shorted can spike upward.

With that in mind, Stockpickr has put together the

Top Industrial Goods Short-Squeeze Plays

, a list of industrial-goods stocks with very high short ratios.

A stock on the list with one of the highest short ratios is


(HEI) - Get HEICO Corporation Report

, a Florida-based company that makes and markets aerospace, defense and electronics-related products.

The stock has a high short ratio of 29.7. The company just reported fiscal fourth-quarter earnings of 40 cents a share, up from 35 cents a share a year ago. This increase was primarily because of significant sales in its flight-support division. The stock has a price-to-earnings ratio of 37, a P/E-to-growth (PEG) ratio of 1.7, and pays a small yield of 0.2%.

Heico also shows up in the Stockpickr portfolio called

MSN Money 40 Best Technicals

, which contains exactly what it says, the top 40 technical stocks according to

MSN Money


Other stocks in this portfolio include

TheStreet Recommends


(AG) - Get First Majestic Silver Corp. Report

, with a short ratio of 2.5,

Affiliated Managers Group

(AMG) - Get Affiliated Managers Group, Inc. Report

, at a 15.8 short ratio, and



, with a 26.3 short ratio.

Another industrial-goods stock with a high short ratio is

Mobile Mini

(MINI) - Get Mobile Mini, Inc. Report

, which is in the business of portable storage products. The company just issued guidance for 2008, with an earnings forecast of $1.50 to $1.60 a share.

It also just entered a new Canadian market, purchasing the portable storage and mobile office division of Centreline Equipment Rentals of Ontario. The stock, which has a short ratio of 20.4, has a P/E of 15 and PEG of 0.8.

Mobile Mini is a stock owned by

Pacific Advisors Small Cap A Fund

, which invests 80% of its assets in small-cap companies. The fund has generated an average annual return of more than 36% over the last five years. Pacific Advisors also owns

Hornbeck Offshore Services

(HOS) - Get Hornbeck Offshore Services, Inc. Report

, with a short ratio of 9,

Terra Industries

( TRA), with a 6.4 short ratio, and


(KEX) - Get Kirby Corporation Report

, with a 3 short ratio.

Ameron International

(AMN) - Get AMN Healthcare Services, Inc. Report

is another stock with a high short ratio -- 14. This engineered products and materials manufacturer has a P/E of 14, a PEG of 1.2, and it pays a yield of 1%.

Ameron is part of

Claymore/Sabrient Stealth Fund

, an ETF that tracks the Sabrient Stealth Index, which contains 150 stocks having little or no Wall Street analyst coverage. Other stocks in the portfolio include


(LNN) - Get Lindsay Corporation Report

, with a 10 short ratio, and


(NEU) - Get NewMarket Corporation Report

, with a 5 short ratio.

For a complete list of the top 10 industrial goods stocks with the highest short ratios, check out the

Top Industrial Goods Short-Squeeze Plays


At the time of publication, Altucher and/or his fund had no positions in stocks mentioned, although positions may change at any time.

James Altucher is president of Stockpickr LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of and part of its network of Web properties, and a managing partner at Formula Capital, an alternative asset management firm that runs a fund of hedge funds. He is also a weekly columnist for

The Financial Times

and the author of

Trade Like a Hedge Fund


Trade Like Warren Buffett



. Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. Altucher appreciates your feedback;

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