LYV Earns Bulls Note Thanks to Surging Ticket Sales

The equity looks ripe for a short squeeze, too

Digital Content Manager
Aug 4, 2021 at 10:32 AM
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The shares of Live Nation Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE:LYV) are up 4.4% to trade at $81.81 at last check, after the company reported smaller-than-expected second-quarter losses of 90 cents per share. The event promotions name said ticket sales surged eight times over, and attributed the strong results to a return to concerts after mass Covid-19 vaccinations, as well as tickets selling out despite a 10% premium from pre-pandemic prices.

At least one analyst is responding to the results with optimism -- the equity earned a price-target hike from Jefferies to $99 from $96 earlier today. The brokerage bunch is still split towards Live Nation Entertainment stock, though, with four carrying a tepid "hold" or worse rating, while four say "strong buy." In other words, an shift in sentiment could push shares even higher.

Shorts are already hitting the exits in droves, but there is still plenty of pessimism left to be unwound. Short interest fell 10.9% in the most recent reporting period, yet the 11.41 million shares sold short make up 7.7% of LYV's available float, or over a week's worth of pent-up buying power.

The options pits are far more optimistic, with calls popular. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the equity's 50-day call/put volume ratio of 2.21 sits higher than 90% of readings from the past year. In other words, long calls are getting picked up at a faster-than-usual pace.

The equity has experienced bouts of volatility on the charts this year. After attempting to rally towards its March 3, all-time high of $94.63 in late June, shares pulled back to the $74 level in July. The $83 mark has kept a lid on the security since, though year-over-year LYV boasts a 72.8% gain. 

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