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How To Short a Stock On Robinhood?

Written by:
Reviewed by: Sara Madsen
How To Short a Stock On Robinhood?

Have you ever heard of shorting a stock? It’s a unique way of betting against a company’s success, and it can be a profitable strategy if executed correctly. Shorting a stock is becoming more accessible thanks to popular investment apps like Robinhood. However, despite the simplicity of buying and selling stocks on Robinhood, shorting is a little more complicated. But don’t worry, we have you covered. In this article, we’ll give you an in-depth guide on how to short a stock on Robinhood and walk you through the process step-by-step. Whether you’re a seasoned investor or just getting started, this guide will provide you with all the information you need to successfully short a stock on Robinhood.

1. Understanding the Basics of Short Selling on Robinhood

Short selling refers to the process of selling a stock that an investor does not own with the expectation that the stock price will decrease in the future. This strategy allows investors to profit from a falling stock price. Robinhood, an online brokerage platform, allows its users to short sell stocks as part of its overall trading functionality.

Short selling can be a useful strategy during market downturns or when a particular stock is overvalued. However, it’s essential to understand the basics of short selling before jumping into it to avoid costly mistakes.

To short sell on Robinhood, a trader needs to have a margin account. A margin account is a type of brokerage account that allows users to borrow money from the broker to purchase securities. The funds borrowed can then be used to short sell stocks as well.

When a trader shorts a stock, they borrow the stock from the broker and sell it to the market. The investor then waits for the price of the stock to decrease so that they can buy it back at a lower price and return the borrowed stock to the broker. The difference between the sale price and the repurchase price represents the profit or loss.

It’s crucial to remember that short selling comes with significant risks. A stock price can rise as well as fall, and a trader can experience unlimited losses if the stock price increases instead of decreasing. As such, it’s essential to have stop-loss orders in place to mitigate losses and keep a close eye on the position when shorting on Robinhood.

2. How to Find Potential Stocks for Shorting on Robinhood

Before you can start short selling stocks on the Robinhood platform, you need to find potential stocks that you can short. This step can be tricky and requires some research and due diligence.

1. Look for Overvalued Stocks

One way to find potential stocks for shorting is to look for overvalued stocks. These stocks are trading at prices higher than their intrinsic value, which means a correction in their price is likely to happen soon. One way to identify overvalued stocks is to look at their price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio. A high P/E ratio indicates that the stock is overvalued compared to its earnings potential. You can find this ratio on Robinhood’s stock analysis page.

2. Consider Companies with Poor Fundamentals

Another way to find potential stocks to short is to look for companies with poor fundamentals. These companies have weak financials, high levels of debt, low earnings, and a weak competitive position. If these companies are not able to improve their financials, their stock price is likely to fall, presenting a great opportunity for short selling.

3. Keep an Eye on Market News

Lastly, keep an eye on the market news to find stocks to short. Look for companies that have negative news, such as missed earnings, lawsuits, or scandals. These companies are likely to have a negative impact on their stock price, presenting an opportunity for you to short the stock.

In conclusion, finding potential stocks to short on Robinhood requires some research and due diligence. Consider looking for overvalued stocks, companies with poor fundamentals, and stay updated on the latest market news. These strategies can help you identify potential stocks that you can short and make profits on the Robinhood platform.

3. Step-by-Step Guide to Shorting a Stock on Robinhood

Short-selling involves borrowing shares from a broker and selling them, with the aim of buying them back at a lower price and returning them to the broker. This strategy is commonly used by investors who anticipate a decline in the stock price. Here’s a :

1. Identify the Stock to Short: Log in to your Robinhood account and search for the stock that you want to short. Click on the stock’s ticker symbol to access its information page.

2. Click on “Trade”: Once you’re on the stock’s information page, click on the “Trade” button located at the bottom of the page.

3. Select “Sell” and “Short”: On the trade screen, select “Sell” as the order type and “Short” as the order type. Enter the number of shares you want to short and click on “Preview Order.”

4. Review and Confirm the Order: On the preview screen, confirm the details of the order, including the number of shares, the price, and the total cost. If you’re satisfied with the details, click on “Submit Order.”

5. Monitor Your Short Position: After successfully placing your short order, monitor the position and track any price movements. Keep in mind that short positions come with inherent risks, so be prepared to close your position if the price moves against you.

It’s important to note that short-selling is a high-risk strategy that should only be attempted by experienced investors who are comfortable with the risks involved. Therefore, make sure to do your due diligence and avoid taking unnecessary risks.

4. Risks Involved in Short Selling and How to Mitigate Them

Short selling can be a profitable investment strategy, but it is not without risks. As the market is unpredictable, shorting a stock can lead to substantial losses if the trade doesn’t go in your favor. Here are some of the risks involved in short selling and how you can mitigate them.

  • Unlimited Losses: One of the most significant risks of short selling is unlimited losses. The reason behind this is when a stock price rises, it can go up to infinity. Therefore, if you are shorting a stock that keeps rising, your loss can be unlimited. To mitigate this risk, it is essential to set a stop-loss order. This order will automatically close your position when the stock reaches a particular price, which will help you limit your losses.
  • Margin Calls: When you short a stock and the stock price rises, your broker may issue a margin call. This is a call to deposit more money into your account to cover losses. If you don’t provide the additional funds, your broker may liquidate your position. To mitigate this risk, it is recommended to keep an eye on your account balance and trade with the amount you can afford to lose.
  • Short Squeeze: A short squeeze is a situation when a stock rises sharply, forcing short sellers to close their positions en masse. This can lead to increased demand for shares, driving up the stock price further. To mitigate this risk, analyze a stock’s fundamentals and market conditions carefully before shorting. Avoid shorting highly volatile stocks or stocks with a high short-interest ratio.

Overall, short selling can be a risky but rewarding investment strategy. Before shorting a stock, it is essential to have a solid understanding of the risks involved and implement appropriate risk management strategies.

5. Monitoring Your Shorted Position on Robinhood: Tips and Best Practices

After you have successfully shorted a stock on Robinhood, it is crucial to monitor your position to ensure that you are making the desired profits and avoiding potential losses. Here are some tips and best practices for monitoring your shorted position on Robinhood.

Use Limit Orders

When monitoring your shorted position on Robinhood, it is recommended that you use limit orders instead of market orders. A limit order allows you to set the maximum price at which you are willing to buy or sell the stock, ensuring that you do not accidentally sell the stock at a loss or buy it back at a higher price than intended.

Keep an Eye on the Stock’s Performance

Keep track of the stock’s performance and news related to the company. This allows you to make informed decisions about when to close your position to avoid potential losses or lock in profits.

Be Prepared for Unexpected Changes

It is important to remember that short selling is a highly volatile and risky trading strategy. Be prepared for unexpected changes in the stock price and the potential for margin calls. Always have a plan in place in case the stock price begins to rise, and consider implementing stop-loss orders to limit potential losses.

By following these tips and best practices for monitoring your shorted position on Robinhood, you can ensure that you are making informed trading decisions and minimizing potential risks.

People Also Ask

Can you short a stock on Robinhood?

Yes, you can short a stock on Robinhood. To short a stock, you need to have a margin account and access to Robinhood Instant, the firm’s premium feature.

Are there any restrictions on short selling on Robinhood?

Yes, short selling on Robinhood is subject to a few restrictions. For instance, you can only short sell stocks that are eligible for margin trading, and the fee for borrowing shares can be higher than traditional brokers charge.

What is the process for shorting a stock on Robinhood?

To short a stock on Robinhood, you need to do the following steps: 1) Open a margin account and apply for Robinhood Instant, 2) Locate the stock you want to short sell and check if it’s eligible for margin trading, 3) Initiate the short trade and place the order with your preferred price and quantity, and 4) Monitor your trade and manage your risk.

What are the risks of short selling on Robinhood?

The risks of short selling on Robinhood include potential losses due to a rising stock price, margin calls that require you to deposit more funds, and borrowing costs that can eat into your profits. Additionally, short selling is a sophisticated strategy that requires careful analysis, discipline, and risk management.

Can you make money by short selling on Robinhood?

Yes, if you short sell a stock that declines in price, you can make a profit by buying back the borrowed shares at a lower price and pocketing the difference. However, short selling is not a guaranteed way to make money, and it carries significant risks and costs that can outweigh the potential rewards.


Short selling is a complex and risky trading strategy that involves betting against a stock’s price movement. While it can potentially lead to profits in a falling market, short selling on Robinhood is subject to restrictions, fees, and risks that traders need to understand and manage. Before attempting to short a stock on Robinhood, investors should research the security thoroughly, assess their risk tolerance and financial situation, and have a well-defined plan for entering and exiting the trade.

Michelle McCoy

Michelle McCoy

I'm Michelle McCoy, a passionate copywriter who has found her niche in crafting compelling narratives, here at Dude Asks. My work harmonizes with my love for storytelling, enabling me to bring brands to life through the magic of words. When I'm not busy weaving tales, you can find me lost in a good book, exploring the beauty of Michigan, or nurturing my garden. My journey as a copywriter is a testament to my belief in the power of stories to connect and inspire.

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