Netflix is scheduled to release its next earnings report tonight after closing bell, while Google and Yahoo are set to report next week. The next two weeks are going to be busy for tech earnings, with Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, LinkedIn and other big companies reporting.
Netflix: Subscriber growth in focus
Perhaps the most important metric for Netflix is subscriber growth. Analysts generally remain positive on Netflix. Consensus estimates suggest earnings of 69 cents per share and $1.57 billion in revenue for the first quarter.
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JPMorgan analyst Doug Anmuth and his team expect Netflix to miss the consensus estimate for earnings, although they name the company as one of their top three favorites in the current earnings season. The reason they think Netflix will miss on earnings is because of its recent $1.5 billion debt raise, and as a result, they don’t think Wall Street will care about an EPS miss.
They especially like the video streaming provider’s international expansion opportunities and believe it will be able to keep growing domestic subscribership “at a healthy clip” while also “aggressively” acquiring new content and seeing “material global profits” starting in 2017.
The JPMorgan team expects Netflix to report 1.8 million domestic net ads and 2.3 million international net adds but sees room for potential upside to those estimates. They believe inclement weather during the first quarter may have boosted subscribership in the U.S.
Bernstein analyst Carlos Kirjner and his team say another goal of Netflix should be to increase its price successfully across all subscribers. Another potential catalyst in tonight’s earnings report, according to Kirjner, is guidance for the June quarter.
As of this writing, shares of Netflix were down 1.2% to $472.98 per share.
Antitrust probe overhanging Google
Unsurprisingly, Google is expected to continue facing headwinds from fluctuations in foreign currencies. The Bernstein team doesn’t think Wall Street “is fully caught up” in factoring in these headwinds, which they expected to be resolved “in a few quarters’ time.”
Kirjner focuses on two key questions regarding Google’s value. One is the rate at which the company can grow search ad revenues. The other is how much and how well the company will invest in research and development and infrastructure.
He adds that the antitrust case in Europe might cause some overhang as right now it’s unclear whether regulators will issue an objection statement. If they do though, any impact would depend on what they propose to fix the situation.
The consensus estimate for Google’s first quarter earnings is $6.63 per share. The Bernstein team is expecting $13.55 billion in revenue excluding traffic acquisition costs, compared to the consensus estimate of $14.07 billion. That includes a currency headwind of $1.11 million. They’re expecting $12.35 billion in revenue from Google Sites and earnings of $6.42 per share.
As of this writing, shares of Google were up 0.14% to $531.11 per share.
Yahoo’s valuation still affected by Alibaba
The Bernstein team also offered three questions for shareholders of Yahoo. Unsurprisingly, the first deals with the value of Alibaba and the shares involved in Yahoo’s SpinCo. After the completion of the spinoff, the new company will hold and distribute Yahoo’s Alibaba shares.
The second question they consider is the course of Yahoo’s core revenue and EBITDA. They point out that the segments with high EBITDA margins which are included under Other Revenues, come to an end in the third quarter. The third question is if Yahoo will ever effectively monetize Tumblr and whether there will be any upside there. They believe Tumblr is undervalued.
Excluding traffic acquisition costs, Kirjner and team expect $1.06 billion in revenues, which is at the high end of the guidance of $1.02 billion to $1.06 billion. They’re projecting $218 million in non-GAAP EBITDA, which is less than the consensus estimate of $236 million. Their projection is at the midpoint of the guidance of between $200 million and $240 million. Their adjusted earnings estimate is 22 cents per share, which is slightly ahead of the consensus of 19 cents per share.
As of this writing, shares of Yahoo were up 0.27% to $45.65 per share.