Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) looks to be rebounding quite nicely after the infamous Qwikster debacle last fall. Its share price jumped 13.4 percent and closed at $81.72 Thursday after CEO Reed Hastings said the company just had its busiest month with more than a billion hours streamed in June.
After the market closed for the Independence Day holiday on Tuesday, Hastings took to his Facebook account to announce the good news for investors. He revealed that usage of the streaming service, widely considered the future of the company as DVDs slowly fall by the wayside, exceeding 1 billion hours for the first time ever during the month of June, wrote Benjamin Pimentel of MarketWatch.
The number suggested a faster growth rate for Netflix, which last reported 2 billion hours of streaming for its entire December quarter, Pimentel noted. However, he pointed out, Netflix shares are still down more than 25 [percent] for the last three months -- and more than 70 [percent] from this time last year.
To make 1 billion hours a little bit easier to digest, that number equates to an average of every subscriber watching the streaming service for roughly 80 minutes every day or 38 hours for the month. One of the most popular shows on the service is Law & Order, and fans of that show could watch every episode of the first eight seasons of the show 7,042,254 times if they were given a billion hours to do so, according to ShortFormBlog.
The company isn't out of the woods yet, though, as Benzinga reported Friday that [a]ccounting rules have allowed Netflix to bury $3.68 billion in commitments and contingencies. That came on the heels of a U.S. district judge's prelimanary OK of a $9 million settlement of a class-action lawsuit that accused the company of violated the Video Privacy Protection Act of 1988 by storing credit-card information and viewing habits of customers for more than two years after they canceled the service, as reported by Reuters.
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Despite its recent gains, Netflix could still finish the year with a loss because of the amounts the company has invested in licensing fees, according to Michael Liedtke of the Huffington Post. That short-term trouble will probably be a good thing in the long run because the streaming activity in June alone has proved that watching movies and TV instantly is the future.
The much-awaited return of Arrested Development -- to be exclusively available on Netflix at some point next year -- is almost certain to help continue the upward trend for the company.