Netflix drops dud on Wall Street as subscriber growth flops

Earnings per share: 85 cents.

The Netflix logo is pictured on a television in this illustration photograph taken in Encinitas, California, U.S., January 18, 2017. Second-quarter revenue was $3.91 billion, which was slightly lower than the $3.94 billion predicted by analysts. The company called its performance in the second quarter "strong but not stellar".

Membership in the quarter grew 5.2 million to a total of 130m, matching the same period a year ago but a million shy of what Netflix forecast, according to a letter released along with earnings figures.

However, GBH Insights saw the Netflix subscriber forecast miss as a "speed bump", rather than start a downward trend, reasoning that the "content arms race continues to be a major tailwind" for the company.

Revenue for the quarter came in at $3.91 billion, lower than the $3.94 billion analyst estimate.

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Netflix added 670,000 subscribers in the United States, well below analysts' estimates of 1.19 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. That's compared with analyst estimates that Netflix would have Q3 net adds of 947,000 in the USA and 5.05 million internationally. Earlier this month, it debuted its first Indian original series, "Sacred Games", part of a slate of new shows aimed at the vast Bollywood entertainment market. While most of the company's revenue growth comes from global markets, the vast majority of its costs remain dollar-denominated.

Netflix has already been battling challenges from Amazon, Google's YouTube and Hulu in the video streaming market, and it is likely to face even stiffer competition as other formidable rivals try to muscle into the market.

Netflix said Monday that it expects more competition, but dismissed any potential negative impact on its business.

Apple, the world's most valuable company, is spending about $1bn on original programming for a video service of its own. And AT&T Inc has promised to boost investment in HBO after taking over the network in its recent acquisition of Time Warner.

Meanwhile, cable distributors are offering smaller and cheaper bundles of channels. "Our strategy is to simply keep improving, as we've been doing every year, " the company said.

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