Netflix Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX) shares have surged 110% this year alone, becoming the best performer in the S&P 500. Despite its rally, Deutsche Bank warns that the tech giant may miss its second quarter subscriber estimates, but Wall Street remains split as Netflix’s earnings approach.
Netflix shares fell by as much as 4% shortly after the opening bell on Friday.
“We see limited upside and even some downside to 2Q guidance/consensus,” Deutsche Bank analyst, Bryan Kraft, said in the report Thursday. “We don't see 2Q earnings as a positive catalyst for the stock; in fact, we see some near-term downside risk.”
After topping subscriber count estimates quarter after quarter, Deutsche Bank is projecting Netflix to miss U.S. subscriber additions. Kraft forecasts global subscribers to grow by 1 Million to 500,000 above Wall Street’s estimates, while U.S. additions will miss by up to 500,000.
Netflix’s stock has more than doubled this year alone, which is another reason why Kraft sees downside for the Company in its upcoming earnings. Kraft lowered his price target to USD 360, while reiterating his buy rating.
“The stock has doubled this year and added another USD 50 B of market capitalization over the past quarter. Without meaningful positive estimate revisions, or 3Q subscriber guidance coming in ahead of expectations, it seems unlikely that the stock will move higher next week," Kraft said. “The stock might see a pull-back in the short term (i.e. next week), but we see significant long term, multiyear value creation ahead.”
UBS analysts lowered their rating to neutral from buy due to the Company’s high valuation.
Other analysts say that Netflix’s success lies within its international subscriber growth. “The debate from here centers on Netflix’s ability to drive the kind of adoption rate and returns globally it has built in the US,” wrote Morgan Stanley analyst, Benjamin Swinburne, in a note published Thursday.
Cowen & Co. analysts raised their price target for Netflix to USD 430 from the previous target of USD 375. The firm projects Netflix’s international user base to grow to 83.6 Million by the end of 2018 and up to 255 Million by 2028.
Daniel Ives, Head of Technology Research at GBH Insights, told MarketWatch that he forecasts international subscribers to grow up to 700 Million by 2020.
FactSet analysts estimates Netflix to report an EPS of USD 79 cents per share, increasing 81% year over year. Analysts forecast Netflix to add 6.2 Million subscribers in the second quarter, 1.2 Million in the U.S. and 5.01 Million internationally.