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Stock Market Futures: Netflix Ahead of this Quarter’s Earnings Report

Two deep-pocketed rivals are targeting Netflix, but Netflix is ready for questions about how that could affect its business by changing its definition of “competition” in advance.

Netflix NFLX, -0.65% showed off a total of 139 million paying subscribers as of the end of 2018. Apple Inc. AAPL, +0.18%, and Walt Disney Co. DIS, +1.52% has also officially introduced their visions of streaming television services.

Now, Netflix must prove its ability continue to grow its subscriber base, like its two giant companies that know how to woo its consumers.

But, Reed Hastings- Chief Executive Netflix, who once said that a streaming HBO would be his greatest competition — has changed his handicapping of the race.

“We compete with (and lose to) Fortnite more than HBO,” the company said in its letter to shareholders for the holiday quarter. Netflix’s focus “is not on Disney+, Amazon or others, but on how we can improve our experience for our members.”

In other words, Netflix views the current streaming players as well as soon-to-launch offerings from Apple and Disney as mere blips on its radar as tries to win a share of consumer screen time from more varied entertainment sources.

Netflix’s challenge is to maintain it’s incredible growth rate while not losing customers to the new rivals. Netflix added 30 million net new subscribers last year as its international push took hold, and is expected by analysts to add at least another 30 million this year.

The subscriber numbers are the figures that move the needle for Netflix stock, which gained 9% after the March-quarter report last year. Executives project 8.9 million additions for the first quarter, which Netflix will report Tuesday when earnings season begins in earnest.

Stock Market Futures: Gold prices slip as China – U.S. trade talks near the finishStock Market, Stock Market Futures: Netflix Ahead of this Quarter’s Earnings Report

On Tuesday, prices of the safe-haven gold fell in Asia amid more positive developments in the China-U.S. trade talks.

Gold futures for June delivery, traded on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, were down 0.2%, at $1,288.15 per ounce by 12:55 AM ET (04:55 GMT).

On Monday, Steven Mnuchin- U.S. Treasury Secretary said that Washington and Beijing might be “close to the final round” of their trade negotiations.

He also told Fox Business Network that negotiations were “making a lot of progress.”

According to reports last week, the two sides have agreed on an enforcement mechanism to police any trade deal they agree on in the future.

Meanwhile, on Monday, Japan and the U.S. kicked off the first round of trade negotiations in Washington.

U.S. President Donald Trump and Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe agreed on last September to hold trade talks in an arrangement that protects Japanese automakers from further tariffs.

In the past, Trump has made clear he is unhappy with Japan’s $68 billion trade surplus with the U.S.

Recent upbeat economic data also boosted risk sentiment. China reported better-than-expected credit and export figures last week while jobs data from the U.S. showed the number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits dropped to a 49-1/2-year low.

In the U.K., Brexit headlines are expected to quiet down over the coming week with parliament on holiday until April 23.

The U.K. had initially been due to leave the EU on March 29, but the deadline has since been extended multiple times.

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