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I focus on opportunities on the long and short side, and take positions through equities and/or equity derivatives. I have worked as a sell-side analyst with a bulge bracket firm; one notable call was a contrarian short thesis on a multibillion dollar company that entered bankruptcy shortly... More
  • Why I Canceled My Netflix Service 0 comments
    Jan 29, 2014 10:30 AM | about stocks: NFLX

    I was a Netflix subscriber for a couple of years. I got the service initially for my oldest son, who wanted the flexibility of being able to watch movies and select TV shows on his laptop, wherever and whenever. Subsequently, my younger sons enjoyed the service as well. We all enjoyed Friday movie nights, much like the Netflix commercials tout. My wife and I enjoyed the first season of Netflix's original series "Orange is the New Black."

    But then the world changed. I signed up for the Amazon Prime service, mainly for the free two-day shipping, but soon realized the value of its Instant Video feature. It has the movies and shows that I enjoy (e.g., I saw The Hunger Games on it recently).

    Similarly, we subscribe to a bundle of Comcast's services, including phone, cable and internet. Comcast's Xfinity service is great, since we get to not only watch recent movies (yes, there is a charge for many of these) but also get to watch our favorite TV shows at the time and place of our choosing. And Comcast gives us the added benefit of an incredible number of free WiFi spots when we leave home.

    I also noticed that many of my younger kids' favorite shows were no longer on Netflix, and their adult selection now looks pathetically limited, when contrasted with the combined Xfinity+Amazon Prime Instant Video services.

    So I finally canceled my Netflix subscription. To the company's credit, they make it really easy to cancel. (I am still trying to cancel an SBC Yahoo email account, but neither Yahoo nor AT&T seem to be able to help me).

    As people realize the other options out there, particularly those that bundle other useful services, expect more subscribers to migrate away, even though the price points are really low. It's just not worth it.

    Disclosure: I am short NFLX.

    Additional disclosure: I recently opened a short position in NFLX and also hold long-dated out of the money NFLX puts.

    Stocks: NFLX
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