Netflix increasing prices, standard plan to top $15 a month; stock jumps

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Netflix Inc. plans to raise its rates for streaming subscriptions in the US and Canada for the second time during the COVID-19 pandemic, which caused initial subscriber growth for the company to slow in 2021.

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netflix’s nflx,
+1.21%
Website updated with new price list on Friday, The Standard plan in the US, which allows for two streams at high-definition quality, will now increase from $13.99 per month to $15.49 per month. Two other main US subscription plans also went up, with the Basic plan increased from $9.99 to $8.99 and the Premium plan increased from $17.99 to $19.99. In Canada, the Standard plan will reportedly increase from C$14.99 to C$16.49.

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“We understand that people have more entertainment options than ever before and we are committed to providing an even better experience for our members,” a Netflix spokesperson said. told Reuters, which first published the news. “We are updating our prices so that we can continue to offer a variety of quality entertainment options. As always, we offer a variety of plans so that members can choose the price that best suits their budget.”

The company, which spent $17 billion on programming in 2021, has not disclosed how much it intends to spend this year.

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Netflix previously raised prices in October 2020, raising the Standard plan from $12.99 to $13.99 and the Premium plan, which allows up to four concurrent streams, from $15.99 to $17.99. The growth came as subscriber growth began to slow for Netflix, after the company added more than 25.8 million net new subscribers in the first half of 2020, when the pandemic first hit and caused a wave of shelter-in-place orders.

For more: Your streaming subscriptions revamped Disney and turbocharged Netflix – now making more money than you

In the full year following that explosion, from mid-2020 to mid-2021, Netflix attracted less than 17 million net new subscribers and less than 1 million on a net basis in North America. The company is leaning on international markets for growth, even slashing prices in India, where Amazon.com Inc. There is competition with AMZN.
+0.58%
and The Walt Disney Company DIS,
-2.15%
is furious.

Netflix executives’ forecast for the holiday quarter called for 8.5 million net new subscribers, but some analysts think the projection was too optimistic. The streaming service is due to report fourth-quarter earnings on Thursday, January 27.

When Reuters published the news, Netflix shares received a heated response to news of higher consumer prices, rising from about $515 per share to more than $530. The stock has struggled under the weight of declining subscriber growth, with the S&P 500 index up 6.1% over the past year as the SPX,
+0.12%
An increase of 22.8%.

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