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GME Stock: Shareholders Still Refuse to Give Up

The long war that has pitted GameStop shareholders against short sellers continues. Although they’ve lost a few battles recently, "GME apes" refuse to give up.

The performance of GameStop  (GME) - Get GameStop Corp. Class A Report shares this January is quite different from their performance last January. Shares are down about 30% YTD - that’s a far cry from the hype-fueled, sky-high soaring that GME was experiencing just one year ago.

In spite of a disappointing start to the year, and even with unfavorable momentum and not-so-bullish indicators for the short term, GME shareholders are holding on tight, refusing to give up their gains to short sellers.

Leaving aside GameStop’s fundamentals and focusing on the behavior of its shareholders, we’ll take a deeper look at the resilience of the GME apes’ community.

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Have short sellers stopped the bleeding?

According to the latest data coming out of an S3 research report, as of October 2021, short sellers had lost more than $6.21 billion betting against GameStop shares. However GME has lost nearly 50% of its share price over the past six months, and short sellers have recouped some of their losses during that period.

Indeed, the same report suggests that GME and AMC short sellers altogether were recovering about $20 million per day during October 2021.

Given GME’s continued decline since October of 2021, whenever the next report is released, we fully expect to see continued gains made by short sellers from November 2021 through to the present.

However, even with the GME shares experiencing some seriously bearish momentum in recent months, traders seem to be learning that short selling GME is like playing with fire.

When we take a look at the data, we see that GME’s short percentage of float sits at about 18.2%. Although that’s well above average, it’s considerably lower than the 30% short interest recorded in June of last year, when the stock broke the $300 level for the second time in its history. It seems that short interest has been gradually declining for almost a year. See below.

Figure 1: GME price performance vs. short % of the float.

Figure 1: GME price performance vs. short % of the float.

Popularity on Reddit won’t cut it

In January 2022, GME’s popularity was once again rocketing on Reddit's main forums; on January 19th, for instance, it was the most discussed ticker by far. See below.

Figure 2: Trending stocks on Reddit on January 19.

Figure 2: Trending stocks on Reddit on January 19.

And in pre-market trading on January 7, GameStop soared 32%. There was considerable retail excitement centered around the company’s announcement that it’d be entering the NFT space.

On the same day, GME’s ticker got nearly 3,000 mentions and more than 100,000 upvotes on Reddit, according to apewisdom.io.

Figure 3: Trending stocks on Reddit on January 7 pre-market.

Figure 3: Trending stocks on Reddit on January 7 pre-market.

Even for a volatile stock like GME, double-digit percentage growth in a single trading day is an impressive feat. The short-term bullish wave was promoted by GameStop-centric Reddit forums such as r/Superstonk and r/GME.

However, even with its Reddit popularity shooting off charts, GMEs moon mission proved short-lived. Despite opening at $159.77 on January 7th, shares closed at $140.62, just a 7% gain from the previous day. Since then, shares have fallen nearly 25%.

How resilient are GME shareholders?

There are no two ways about it, for GME, January 2022 is shaping up to be a lot different than January 2021. And according to current indicators, it is very unlikely that lightning will strike twice.

Yet one of the most astonishing things about GameStop is the incredible resilience its shareholders have demonstrated. They’ve held their shares, despite the massive profits that could have been taken from cashing in, and they’ve even bought additional shares as the stock has dipped.

This “diamond hands,” never-say-die attitude is reinforced and encouraged on major Reddit forums and other social media channels. It’s the main reason that GME shares still sit above the $100 mark, giving GameStop an $8 Billion market cap.

While it is difficult to know the limit of GME shareholders' ability to hold - each individual investor has his or her own goals, after all - using the sentiment of the GME shareholder community as a yardstick, it seems reasonable to say that GME apes are far from giving up.

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(Disclaimers: this is not investment advice. The author may be long one or more stocks mentioned in this report. Also, the article may contain affiliate links. These partnerships do not influence editorial content. Thanks for supporting the Wall Street Memes)