NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- In the first week of May, we polled TheStreet users on their opinion of whether there's much upside left for Ford ( F) stock after its impressive run over the past year.
Out of more than 2000 votes, 84.2% said they're bullish on Ford stock and believe there's more upside left for the stock. Only 12.1% of respondents said they're taking a wait-and-see approach on Ford. Meanwhile, a mere 3.8% of voters were bearish about Ford, believing that the stock had run its course, at least for now. Richard Sparks, senior equities researcher at Schaeffer's Investment Research, which specializes in option trading services, said "we kind of like the stock," given that it's the "best positioned" of U.S. automakers, and could, potentially, with all of the existing Toyota ( TM) problems, be one of the better-positioned ones with respect to all auto stocks. For years, it was Honda ( HMC) and Toyota who, in most people's opinion, produced the best-quality cars. But Ford has closed that gap with its highly-rated vehicles.
Indeed, in the equity analyst community, the percentage of sell ratings on Ford stock has dropped from 38% back in mid-January to 18% recently, Sparks said. And as late as mid-March, there were no buy ratings for Ford stock; but now there are five strong buys, four holds, one sell and one strong sell, according to Sparks' data. Worth noting is that short interest has been growing on the stock -- evidence, of course, that there are still skeptics out there. But Sparks actually likes that, because if short interest goes down, that's yet another boost to the stock. "If the stock continues higher, these people would be forced to capitulate to cover shorts or buy into the trend and go net long," he pointed out. -- Reported by Andrea Tse in New York