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Netflix tops S&P 500 in 2013, investors eye earnings report

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Netflix tops S&P 500 in 2013, investors eye earnings report

The S&P 500 has advanced more than 15.7 percent since the first of the year, defying weak earnings reports and ongoing US Fed speculation. Last week the benchmark gauge hit multiple record highs on the back of strong US job numbers and upbeat financial sector profits. At the centre of the S&P’s far-reaching success has been Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) , whose shares have skyrocketed more than 187 percent since January 1. Netflix has obtained more than 36 million global subscribers, adding six million within two years of going global.

On Monday Netflix released its official second quarter earnings report on the backdrop of high expectations from Wall Street. The report comes on the heels of several successes for Netflix, including an uptake of global subscribers, the development of more original series and the release of the highly-anticipated fourth season of Arrested Development, which is expected to have boosted subscriptions in the second quarter.

Netflix earnings exceeded expectations Monday, despite revenues meeting most analysts’ forecasts. The company reported per share earnings of 49 cents on $1.07 billion in revenue. In 2012 Q2, Netflix earned 11 cents per share on revenues of $889 million.

Year-to-date, the value of Netflix shares has almost tripled. On July 17 shares hit an all-time high of $267.92. Netflix posted a five-day gain of more than 2.5 percent before Friday’s tech selloff weakened its gains. Despite the strong earnings report, Netflix closed Monday’s New York session at $261.96 after quarterly subscriptions fell below expectations (630,000 versus expectations of 700,000). The share price fell to $244.95 in after-hours trading.

The benchmark indices all closed higher Monday. The S&P 500 posted a gain of 0.2 percent to close at 1,695.53. The Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up slightly to 15,545.50 (+0.01 percent), and the NASDAQ Composite advanced more than 0.3 percent to close at 3,600.39.

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