Howard Schultz, former chairman of Starbucks Corp., speaks during a promotional event for the company’s VIA Coffee Essence instant coffee in Tokyo, Japan. (Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg) 

Starbucks Sees Surge in Short Selling as Schultz Weighs 2020 Run

(Bloomberg) -- Investors boosted bets against Starbucks Corp. over the past week after former chairman Howard Schultz said he’s considering a presidential run in 2020.

Short sellers borrowed an additional 2.5 million shares over the past week following the billionaire’s announcement of his potential bid on Jan. 27, according to S3 Partners. That was the largest increase in short interest among restaurant stocks, said Ihor Dusaniwsky, managing director of predictive analytics at S3.

Starbucks Sees Surge in Short Selling as Schultz Weighs 2020 Run

Short interest in Starbucks is now about 3.3 percent of the free float, but still lower than the 52-week high of 6.7 percent in October. It continues to be the most-shorted stock in the restaurant group, Ihor said.

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