Netflix fears union of Comcast and Time Warner

Shares of the online streaming company were up after a solid earnings report, but CEO Reed Hastings isn't happy.

By Motley Fool Investor Beat Apr 23, 2014 11:54AM
Shares of streaming video company Netflix (NFLX) were up big Tuesday after it announced a strong quarter, which included beating analyst estimates for profit and meeting estimates for revenue. Even more important, the company saw its total number of subscribers grow to 48.4 million, a new high.

But the real highlight from Netflix was the comments from CEO Reed Hastings about the proposed Comcast (CMCSA) and Time Warner Cable (TWC) merger. Despite the fact that Netflix recently made a deal with Comcast to pay extra for faster streaming service, Hastings has said that he doesn't approve of the upcoming merger.
But Hastings' fears may be justified: A combined Comcast and Time Warner Cable would create a titan in the cable industry whose services would be available to 70 percent of the U.S. population.Caption: Netflix online DVD & movie rental site
Credit: © Kevin Britland/Alamy

So what's the next step in this saga that investors should be watching for? On Tuesday's Stock of the Day, Motley Fool analyst Michael Finarelli says he'll be watching the merger proceedings between Comcast and Time Warner Cable closely, as will Federal regulators. Regardless of that, Michael believes that Comcast's position as a sort of toll bridge for cable and Internet streaming gives it an extremely strong hand.

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52Comments
Apr 23, 2014 12:30PM
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""""A combined Comcast and Time Warner Cable would create a titan in the cable industry whose services would be available to 70 percent of the U.S. population."""

 

why wouldn't this merger be classified as a monopoly??????

Apr 23, 2014 3:57PM
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""Netflix fears union of Comcast and Time Warner""

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NEVER MIND what Netflix fears - It's what CABLE USERS (CUSTOMERS) FEARS ABOUT THAT UNION.

Apr 23, 2014 4:03PM
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HELLO PRICE INCREASE - GOODBYE QUALITY CUSTOMER SERVICE.
Apr 23, 2014 12:39PM
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Time Warner and Comcast are equally as hated and people have been running to netflix to get away from these monstrosities.  Combined, they will be just as arrogant and unreasonable as they were separate.  Netflix should be happy to see them combine.  Goliath just got bigger and clumsier.
Apr 23, 2014 4:31PM
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Most people will still flock to the service that gives them the best bang for their buck. The cold fact is that the economy still sucks and looks like it will continue to suck for some time.
Apr 23, 2014 5:44PM
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emeffers are trying to corral netflix to wedge it out so they can bring us streaming with monthly  rate increases,endless commercials,mandatory worthless channels offered in "packages"...in other words entertainment hell ...
Apr 23, 2014 7:02PM
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Our antitrust laws are a sham. Once again, consumers will lose and competing jobs will be lost.
Apr 23, 2014 10:04PM
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Monopoly is a fun game AND an extremely illegal American business practice.

Here's to hoping that Time Warner and Comcast get the exceedingly invasive financial cavity search they so richly deserve....

Go directly to jail, do not pass go........

Apr 23, 2014 8:06PM
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They (comcast & time warner) should not be able to merge. This is a monopoly FTC better be against this happening. I would never have comcast just because they are already to big. 
Apr 23, 2014 9:36PM
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And when Google Fiber comes to town the cable companies will be crying the blues.
Apr 24, 2014 1:18AM
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Netflix should pray for that union. 
It will be a disaster for customers and drive up subscribers for Netflix. 

Apr 23, 2014 7:30PM
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funny thing you would think the monopoly thing is going out the window right  ?? Its the USA if you have the money you can do anything you want to do... its America... and god Bless... yeah right xoxoxo
Apr 24, 2014 1:52AM
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Netflix we have heard is going to rise it's rates in June of this year. Again Netflix shoots themselves in the foot.

We've been checking Red Box, and they now steam movies, and more new releases for the same 8 bucks a month as Netflix and if you have Streaming and want say "the Lone Ranger" you have to pay another 7.99 to order the CD buy mail.

Red Box if you have the $8.00 per Streaming, you watch it right now at no extra charge !

Guess who is going to be getting my business when Netflix rises prices in June.

Apr 24, 2014 9:02AM
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   I remember years ago when people campaigned for Free T.V stating that pay T.V as cable was called would come back to bite us in the as. Well they were right, you pay all kinds of money to receive  more useless programming along with even more commercials than ever. Think about it 200 channels let say and how many do you watch ? Six ? 10 ? 3 ? I understand that you pay for the picture quality  as well but still it is just out of hand. If you just paid for a set of channels that you watch all the time then paid for an out of select channel for something of interest when it comes along you would be paying a lower and fairer monthly bill. This is starting to happen already and when it goes into full bloom kiss cable as you know it goodbye. They won't be missed RIP
Apr 24, 2014 7:47AM
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No competition re. ComCast down here in the Ft. Myers area, we are paying $72 a month for wifi, although Netflix paid $$ for streaming--no improvement, video and audio way out of sync. Thinking of dropping Netflix. Not worth the money either for ComCast or Newtflix but captive audience. Dial-up unacceptable around here, or satellite internet, thunderstorms almost daily. Merger not gonna be good for consumers or respective company's employees--mergers never kind to either.
Apr 23, 2014 7:16PM
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stock will go down once Netflix adds the fee for steaming movies.
Apr 23, 2014 5:35PM
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Kudos to Steve Wynn-Clooney you're a sh!tbag !!! Selena Gomez -you will soon be without any friends-you will just be Bieber's Tex-Mex whore !!!!!
Apr 23, 2014 5:48PM
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Idiots with their horrible streaming service should pay more just for the fact that they are stupid.  Hard to believe that high tech televisions have come this far only for stupid people to watch low res streaming movies on a 10 inch tablet.  You idiots are feeding the greed of the movie industry and you don't even realize it.

Apr 23, 2014 9:53PM
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I was considering getting Netflix until I heard they plan to raise their prices. I already have to pay Internet fees, Netflix doesn't pay that and I don't pay that from them.  That is the reason cable and satellite are high, because we are also paying for the transmission medium.  But with Netflix, we are paying for that. 


What Netflix should fear is losing customers and chasing away potential new customers.

Apr 23, 2014 5:15PM
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Funny how all these big corporations are considered liberal. What I don't understand is why these big corporations favor liberals who want to raise their taxes.
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