Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) shares traded up 1.5% during trading on Friday after Zacks Investment Research upgraded the stock from a hold rating to a buy rating. Zacks Investment Research now has a $207.00 price target on the stock. Netflix traded as high as $194.49 and last traded at $197.27. 10,369,719 shares changed hands during trading, an increase of 45% from the average session volume of 7,144,400 shares. The stock had previously closed at $194.39.

According to Zacks, “Netflix is benefitting from its focus on original programming and international expansion. The recent increase in monthly subscriptions price for the U.S. consumers will drive Netflix’s top-line. The strength in content portfolio will help it to gain more subscribers across the globe. Going ahead, the company expects to add 0.75 million subscribers in the domestic streaming segment and 3.65 million subscribers in the international segment in the third quarter. The company’s efforts to attract viewers through investing in more regional programming should also boost user base. Plus, the company expects to report profits from International operations in the third quarter. In the past one year, Netflix shares have vastly outperformed the industry. Estimates have remained stable ahead of the upcoming earnings release. But, investments in original/acquired content remain a drag on profitability.”

A number of other research analysts have also commented on NFLX. CIBC reissued an “outperform” rating and set a $215.00 price target (up from $200.00) on shares of Netflix in a report on Friday. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a “hold” rating and set a $165.00 price target (down from $171.80) on shares of Netflix in a report on Wednesday, August 9th. Robert W. Baird reissued a “hold” rating and set a $175.00 price target on shares of Netflix in a report on Wednesday. Wedbush reissued a “sell” rating on shares of Netflix in a report on Wednesday, August 9th. Finally, J P Morgan Chase & Co reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Netflix in a report on Wednesday, August 9th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seventeen have given a hold rating and thirty-one have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $185.18.

In other news, CEO Reed Hastings sold 109,214 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $188.61, for a total transaction of $20,598,852.54. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 109,214 shares in the company, valued at $20,598,852.54. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, insider Jonathan Friedland sold 1,217 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, October 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $193.34, for a total value of $235,294.78. Following the sale, the insider now owns 1,217 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $235,294.78. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 316,067 shares of company stock valued at $56,923,386. 4.90% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in NFLX. Almanack Investment Partners LLC. bought a new stake in shares of Netflix during the second quarter worth $101,000. TD Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Netflix during the second quarter worth $105,000. SRS Capital Advisors Inc. raised its position in shares of Netflix by 3,361.9% during the first quarter. SRS Capital Advisors Inc. now owns 727 shares of the Internet television network’s stock worth $107,000 after acquiring an additional 706 shares during the last quarter. Harfst & Associates Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Netflix during the first quarter worth $109,000. Finally, Aviance Capital Management LLC bought a new stake in shares of Netflix during the second quarter worth $137,000. Institutional investors own 81.03% of the company’s stock.

The stock has a market capitalization of $85.49 billion, a P/E ratio of 240.90 and a beta of 1.09. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $178.79 and a 200-day moving average price of $163.66. Netflix also saw some unusual options trading on Thursday. Stock traders acquired 122,784 call options on the stock. This is an increase of approximately 283% compared to the typical daily volume of 32,078 call options.

Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) last released its quarterly earnings data on Monday, July 17th. The Internet television network reported $0.15 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.16 by ($0.01). Netflix had a net margin of 3.55% and a return on equity of 12.82%. The firm had revenue of $2.79 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.76 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.09 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 32.3% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts forecast that Netflix, Inc. will post $1.17 EPS for the current year.

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About Netflix

Netflix, Inc is a provider an Internet television network. The Company operates through three segments: Domestic streaming, International streaming and Domestic DVD. The Domestic streaming segment includes services that streams content to its members in the United States. The International streaming segment includes services that streams content to its members outside the United States.

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