Shares of on-demand video streaming leader Netflix Inc. (NFLX) are making a comeback on Thursday following their latest plunge the day before. The company's stock took a hit due to a Morgan Stanley report that estimates Apple Inc.'s (AAPL) video business to grow to $4.4 billion by 2025. After shares of the Los Gatos, Calif.-based company closed down 6.2% on Wednesday, one team of bulls on the Street recommends buying on the dip, citing the firm's dominant position in the burgeoning video streaming space.
(See also: Apple May Pair Video Streaming With Magazines.)
RBC Survey 'Confirms Netflix's Strong Value Prop and Competitive Position'
In a note to clients, reported by CNBC, RBC Capital Markets hiked its Netflix price target by 22% from $360 to $440, representing a 29% upside from Wednesday close. RBC's Mark Mahaney pointed to the investment firm's recent consumer survey, indicating that results "largely confirm Netflix's strong Value Prop and Competitive Position."
In the second quarter, Netflix failed to meet the Street's consensus for user additions, securing 5.15 million new memberships versus the consensus of 6.34 million. Since posting results in mid July, shares have fallen 18%. While bears warn on Netflix's high cash burn, bulls cite its industry leadership and argue that the spending is necessary to ward off competition from new rivals like deep pocketed tech titans Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN), Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL) and Apple.
Mahaney indicated that the recent survey of 1,500 U.S. consumers confirmed his conviction that Netflix is "one of the best derivatives off the strong growth in online video viewing and in Internet connected devices," including tablets, smartphones and Internet TVs. He specifically pointed to higher levels of customer satisfaction, as the survey found 68% of Netflix subscribers are either "extremely" or "very satisfied" with the streaming service. The survey also showed that 57% of respondents use Netflix.
"We believe that Netflix has achieved a level of sustainable scale, growth, and profitability that isn't currently reflected in its stock price," wrote the RBC analyst.
Netflix shares were up 1.67% on Thursday at $341.18, reflecting a whopping 69% return year-to-date (YTD) compared to the S&P 500's 7.4% gain over the same period.