CBK: Insiders vs. Shorts

The most recent short interest data was recently released by the NASDAQ for the 04/30/2015 settlement date, and Christopher & Banks Corp. (CBK) is one of the most shorted stocks of the Russell 3000, based on 9.46 "days to cover" versus the median component at 5.42. There are a number of ways to look at short data, but one metric that we find particularly useful is the "days to cover" because it considers both the total shares short and the average daily volume of shares typically traded. The number of shares short is then divided by the average daily volume, to express the total number of trading days it would take to close out all of the open short positions if every share traded represented a short position being closed.

START SLIDESHOW:
Ten Bargains You Can Buy Cheaper Than The Insiders Did »

In the case of Christopher & Banks Corp. ( CBK), the total short interest at the 04/30/2015 settlement date was 2,013,984 shares, which compares to the average daily trading volume of just 212,939 shares, for a "days to cover" ratio of 9.46.

When short sellers eventually cover their positions, by definition there must be buying activity because a share that is currently sold short must be purchased to be covered. At the present levels of short interest, if from this point forward every single CBK share traded represented a short position being closed, then at the average daily volume of 212,939 shares it would only be during the 10th trading day that every short position would be closed.

So it would stand to reason that should some unexpectedly good news come out, and short sellers did not have 10 days of patience but instead wanted to cover their short positions very suddenly, that situation could result in sending the stock higher until the higher price produces enough sellers to generate the necessary volume to close out those positions quickly.

Christopher & Banks Corp. ( CBK) has something relatively rare for a stock with this much short interest, that being insiders taking the other side of the trade. Looking back over the trailing six month period, CBK has seen 7 different instances of insider buying, as summarized by the table below:

Purchased Insider Title Shares Price/Share Value
12/05/2014 Peter G. Michielutti EVP, COO and CFO 6,000 $4.73 $28,403.40
12/09/2014 Monica L. Dahl SVP, Mrkting, Omnichannel & PR 5,500 $4.45 $24,498.65
12/12/2014 William F. Sharpe III Director 4,250 $4.85 $20,599.33
12/12/2014 Luke Komarek SVP, General Counsel 8,000 $4.77 $38,130.40
12/15/2014 Cindy J. Stemper SVP, Human Resources 3,000 $4.66 $13,965.30
12/19/2014 Lynn C. Derry SVP, GMM 5,000 $5.28 $26,395.00
03/27/2015 Luann Via President & CEO 15,000 $5.27 $79,101.00

Below is a chart showing the "days to cover" for CBK over time:

Loading+chart++2015+TickerTech.com

And looking at the chart below, CBK's low point in its 52 week range is $4.12 per share, with $11.22 as the 52 week high point — that compares with a last trade of $6.07.

Christopher & Banks Corp. Moving Averages Chart

In recent trading, shares of Christopher & Banks Corp. ( CBK) were changing hands at $6.07/share.

More from Stocks

PayPal Says It's Testing a Venmo Debit Card

PayPal Says It's Testing a Venmo Debit Card

Dow Tumbles as Trump Calls Off North Korea Summit

Dow Tumbles as Trump Calls Off North Korea Summit

Jim Cramer: Why I am So Bullish on Apple's Services Revenue

Jim Cramer: Why I am So Bullish on Apple's Services Revenue

Jim Cramer: Does Saudi Arabia Think Oil Prices Are Too High?

Jim Cramer: Does Saudi Arabia Think Oil Prices Are Too High?

Video: Jim Cramer on North Korea, Oil Prices, Apple and Carnival Corporation

Video: Jim Cramer on North Korea, Oil Prices, Apple and Carnival Corporation