It looks like things are becoming increasingly intense between AMC Entertainment (NYSE:AMC) fanatics and the short-sellers they are warring against. New allegations of naked shorting and illegal price manipulation are catching some serious momentum. As such, many are taking to Twitter to voice their concern and anger. #AMCThreshold is hitting the trending tabs as the AMC apes get their favorite stock trending yet again.
Much of the attention around AMC comes from the fact that the play has remained on the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s threshold list for multiple consecutive days.
These tweeters are delving deep into a mob investigation of the odd goings-on with their favorite stock.
While it might look like holders are selling off, posters are trying to rally their fellow investors. Many are declaring that this is not at all a selloff, but rather malicious shorting by institutions to artificially decrease the value of AMC stock. So, what are all these gears driving the recent AMC FUD, and what does it mean for the stock?
— Matt kneram (@matt_kneram) July 7, 2021
The Ins and Outs of Naked Shorting and the Threshold List
AMC landing on the threshold list is a telling story about naked short selling. But what is naked short selling, and how does it differ from regular short selling? Short selling is when one borrows shares, sells in anticipation of losses, and then buys them back to return. This is totally legal. However, naked shorting is not; with naked short selling, the seller doesn’t actually borrow any shares, and they don’t secure any means to do so. In essence, naked short selling is in selling made-up shares.
Naked shorting was made illegal in the wake of the 2009 financial crisis. The SEC’s Regulation SHO is designed to help uncover this activity. One aspect of the Regulation SHO is the threshold list. When a stock ends up on the list, it is because that security’s stocks fail to deliver for five consecutive days. At least 10,000 shares must fail to deliver to end up on the list. This exposes naked shorting on a security, and with AMC being on this list for multiple days, it can be posited that institutions were naked shorting AMC stock and are now refusing to buy back their FTDs in the wake of the momentous short squeeze.
AMC Holders Dispel Selloff Fears With #AMCThreshold
Well today, many are theorizing that institutions aren’t just refusing to buy back FTDs. Rather, many believe that short sellers are increasing their short positions to continue artificially decreasing the price. Of course, in increasing these short positions, they are selling off the borrowed shares. This makes the trading feed look like a selloff is taking place.
To combat this, users are posting Ortex data under the #AMCThreshold hashtag, suggesting increasing short positions in AMC and dispelling any fear that holders are selling off their shares. If these theories hold true, we’ll be seeing a higher short interest than the current 17.02% with the next short report by the New York Stock Exchange.
On the date of publication, Brenden Rearick did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.