Pay TV concern Altice USA (ATUS) has had a rough 2018, with the shares down 20% year-to-date. In fact, it’s been a bumpy ride for the stock since going public in June 2017, with ATUS embarking on a series of lower highs, and spending the past six months bouncing around all-time lows in the $16-$16.50 area. What’s more, ATUS could be staring at another rocky road in the short term, if one technical signal comes to fruition.
Specifically, the equity recently came within one standard deviation of its 200-day moving average, after a lengthy stretch below this trendline. Since inception, there have been three signals of this kind — including the most recent — after which ATUS was down 5.13% a month later, on average. The stock is already 4.5% lower today, trading at $16.68.
Short sellers have clearly been in control recently. Short interest surged more than 38% in the past two reporting periods, and now accounts for more than 9% of ATUS’ total available float. As shorts continue to pile on, it could exacerbate the security’s struggles.
On the other hand, despite the stock’s long-term chart woes, Wall Street remains enamored. A whopping 14 analysts deem ATUS worthy of a “strong buy” endorsement, and another brokerage firm sports a “buy” rating. Just two analysts offer up lukewarm “hold” recommendations, with not a single “sell” in sight. Should the shares resume their quest for new-low territory, a flood of downgrades could weigh on ATUS.