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The FAANG team of mega cap stocks produced hefty returns for investors throughout 2020.

The team, whose members include Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN), Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL) benefited greatly from the COVID-19 pandemic as people sheltering in place used the products of theirs to shop, work as well as entertain online.

Of the previous year alone, Facebook gained thirty five %, Amazon rose 78 %, Apple was up 86 %, Netflix saw a 61 % boost, along with Google’s parent Alphabet is actually up 32 %. As we enter 2021, investors are wondering in case these tech titans, optimized for lockdown commerce, will achieve very similar or even even better upside this year.

By this number of five stocks, we are analyzing Netflix today – a high-performer during the pandemic, it’s now facing a unique competitive threat.

Stay-at-Home Appeal Diminishing?
Netflix has been one of probably the strongest equity performers of 2020. The company and its stock benefited from the stay-at-home environment, spurring desire due to its streaming service. The stock surged aproximatelly ninety % from the minimal it hit on March sixteen, until mid October.

NFLX Weekly TTMNFLX Weekly TTM
But, during the past three months, that rally has run out of steam, as the company’s key rival Disney (NYSE:DIS) acquired a great deal of ground of the streaming fight.

Within a year of its launch, the DIS’s streaming service, Disney+, now has more than eighty million paid subscribers. That’s a tremendous jump from the 57.5 million it found to the summer quarter. Which compares with Netflix’s 195 million subscribers as of September.

These successes by Disney+ came at the same time Netflix has been reporting a slowdown in the subscriber growth of its. Netflix in October found it added 2.2 million subscribers in the third quarter on a net basis, light of its forecast in July of 2.5 million new subscriptions for the period.

But Disney+ isn’t the sole headache for Netflix. AT&T’s (NYSE:T) WarnerMedia division can be found in the midst of an equivalent restructuring as it is focused on the new HBO Max of its streaming platform. As well, Comcast’s (NASDAQ:CMCSA) NBCUniversal is realigning its entertainment businesses to give priority to its new Peacock streaming service.

Negative Cash Flows
Apart from rising competition, the thing that makes Netflix a lot more weak among the FAANG team is the company’s small cash position. Given that the service spends a great deal to create its exclusive shows and capture international markets, it burns a lot of money each quarter.

To improve its money position, Netflix raised prices due to its most popular program during the very last quarter, the next time the company has been doing so in as several years. The move might possibly prove counterproductive in an environment where folks are losing jobs as well as competition is warming up. In the past, Netflix price hikes have led to a slowdown in subscriber growth, particularly in the more mature U.S. market.

Benchmark analyst Matthew Harrigan last week raised very similar concerns in his note, warning that subscriber development might slow in 2021:

Netflix’s trading correlation with various other prominent NASDAQ 100 and FAAMG names has now obviously broken down as one) trust in the streaming exceptionalism of its is fading relatively even as two) the stay-at-home trade may be “very 2020″ despite having some concern about just how U.K. and South African virus mutations might affect Covid 19 vaccine efficacy.”

The 12 month price target of his for Netflix stock is actually $412, aproximatelly 20 % beneath its current level.

Bottom Line

Netflix’s stay-at-home appeal made it both one of the greatest mega caps and tech stocks in 2020. But as the competition heats up, the business should show it continues to be the high streaming choice, and that it is well-positioned to protect the turf of its.

Investors appear to be taking a break from Netflix inventory as they hold out to see if that will occur.

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