Analysts Flock to Netflix Stock After Earnings

The streaming company warned its surge might be short-lived

Laura McCandless
Apr 22, 2020 at 10:22 AM
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Netflix Inc (NASDAQ:NFLX) has been one of the few stocks to consistently thrive during the pandemic, it's up 30% this year amid the "stay-at-home" consumer environment. After last night's close, Netflix reported first-quarter earnings of $1.57 per share, lower than Wall Street's anticipated $1.65. However, the 16 million new subscribers and $5.77 billion in revenue both beat out expectations. Netflix warned that the success might be short-lived, though, and as a result, the shares are down 2.8%% to trade at $421.72. 

Despite this, no less than 16 analysts raised their price targets. Meanwhile, Wells Fargo upgraded NFLX  to "equal weight," but both Raymond James and Stifel downgraded the equity to "outperform" and "hold," respectively. Coming into today, 19 out of 28 covering NFLX considered it a "buy" or better, with the remaining nine calling the stock a "hold" or worse. Netflix's 12-month consensus price target of $442.13 is a 5.6% premium to current levels. 

It looks like the equity's 10-day moving average may be containing today's drop, with additional support coming in at the $420 level -- a region that NFLX vaulted atop late last week as it surged towards its all-time high of $449.52 on April 16. While the shares are now looking at a weekly loss, they're still up 13% for the month. 

Calls have been winning out in the options pits, per NFLX's 10-day call/put volume ratio of 1.83 at the International Securites Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), which sits higher than 88% of readings from the past year. This suggests that long calls are more popular than usual.


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