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Netflix Hits Record as ‘Squid Game’ Extends Content-Fueled Rally

A television camera focuses on the Netflix Inc. company logo in this arranged photograph in London, U.K., on Tuesday, June 26, 2018. Addressing a room filled with New Delhis business elite earlier this year, Netflix Inc. Chief Executive Officer Reed Hastings offered a prediction: His companys next 100 million customers will come from India. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Netflix Inc. shares closed at a record on Thursday, the latest sign that Wall Street is optimistic a steady stream of hit shows will keep subscribers coming. 

Recent stock gains have been fueled by the return or debut of well-known titles, including new seasons of “The Witcher” and the sitcom “Seinfeld.” But the latest lift has come from the South Korean action-drama series “Squid Game,” whose massive popularity appears to be an early indicator of stronger user trends, Bloomberg Intelligence wrote on Wednesday.

Netflix “could be rounding a corner” following a slowdown in subscriber growth earlier this year, analyst Geetha Ranganathan wrote. The success of “Squid Game” at driving user growth “is most evident in the Asia-Pacific region, yet downloads jumped globally.”

YipitData estimated that global Netflix downloads have reached their highest levels of 2021, driven by the Asia-Pacific region in particular.

Shares rose 1.9% to $610.27 on Thursday. So far this week, the stock is up 3%, making it a pronounced outperformer relative to other high-profile technology and internet stocks. The Nasdaq 100 Index is down more than 4% this week, as rising bond yields pushed investors to sell growth names.

'Squid Game' is the streamer's latest hit

Over the weekend, Netflix hosted a Global Fan Event where it provided some detail on upcoming content. It also recently agreed to buy Roald Dahl Story Co., giving it content from the beloved children’s author, and acquired Night School Studio, its first video game developer.

Netflix is scheduled to report its third-quarter results in October.


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