Nasdaq short interest up 0.5 pct in early January

NEW YORK Mon Jan 27, 2014 4:52pm EST

NEW YORK Jan 27 (Reuters) - Short interest on the Nasdaq edged up 0.5 percent in the first half of January, the exchange said on Monday.

As of Jan. 15, short interest rose to about 7.62 billion shares, compared with 7.58 billion shares as of Dec. 31.

Investors who sell securities 'short' borrow shares and then sell them, expecting the stock to fall so they can buy the shares back at the lower price, return them to the lender and pocket the difference.

Shorting can also be part of a hedging strategy.

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