The Catalyst That Has Eros International plc (EROS) Burning Bears

Eros International plc (EROS) responded to a "vicious campaign" that's been weighing on the stock

by Alex Eppstein

Published on Nov 2, 2015 at 11:19 AM

In the past two weeks, Indian film producer Eros International plc's (NYSE:EROS) earnings and sales growth have been called into question, pressuring the shares sharply lower. Today, however, the stock is bouncing back after the company defended itself against the "vicious campaign to damage [its] credibility," with a statement that underscored EROS' confidence in its fundamentals. As such, the shares are 17.7% higher at $13.50.

Skeptics across Wall Street may be wringing their hands on the sizable gains. For instance, during the past 10 days at the International Securities exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), EROS has amassed a put/call volume ratio of 2.31 -- with puts bought to open at more than twice the rate of calls.

Short sellers haven't been shy about betting against the stock, either. During the past two reporting periods, short interest spiked almost 160%, and now makes up close to one-fifth of EROS' total float. At the equity's typical trading levels, it would take one week to repurchase these bearish positions.

However, the sentiment landscape is markedly differently among the brokerage crowd. Specifically, 75% of analysts rate EROS a "strong buy," with not a single "sell" recommendation to be found. Plus, the stock's average 12-month price target of $36.33 represents a 169% premium to current trading levels.

Turning one last time to the charts, while this morning's gains are impressive, they're fairly small relative to Eros International plc's (NYSE:EROS) near-term losses. Since hitting a recent high of $33.09 on Oct. 13 -- which corresponded with the company's annual investor day -- the shares have plummeted 59%.

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