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Why Netflix Shares Fell 5% Today

By Anders Bylund – Dec 7, 2018 at 4:05PM

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Jittery markets can be all the reason this stock needs to make a big move. That was the story here.

What happened

Shares of video streaming veteran Netflix (NFLX 2.08%) dipped as much as 5.8% on Friday. The company didn't have particularly bad news to circulate today, and the analyst chatter has been mellow. But it's no surprise to see this volatile market darling falling on a weak day for Wall Street in general.

So what

Analysts did have some things to say about Netflix today. RBC Capital's Mark Mahaney released the latest results from his series of surveys exploring the attitudes of Netflix users, showing record-high use of Netflix services in several key markets. In particular, European customers appear to love Netflix more than ever, as roughly 40% of French and German respondents to that survey said that they had been using Netflix recently. That's up from 25% to 30% a year ago.

But the S&P 500 market barometer pointed 2.1% lower at 3 p.m. EST due to a weak report on job growth and several disappointing earnings reports after Thursday's closing bell. The poor business reports came from the consumer goods sector, sparking a broad sell-off in that market segment -- which includes Netflix.

A photo of Netflix's headquarters in Los Gatos, California, featuring the company logo on a stucco wall.

Image source: Netflix.

Now what

As a growth stock that trades at 98 times trailing earnings and shows negative cash flows, Netflix sometimes makes big moves on nothing but shifts in the market tenor. The stock is trading 45% above 52-week lows right now but also 37% below its yearly highs. It wouldn't shock me to see a few more of these big no-news moves before Netflix publishes its next quarterly business report in late January -- unless the markets settle down in a general sense. And none of today's action changes Netflix's solid long-term value.

Anders Bylund owns shares of Netflix. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Netflix. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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