Netflix's Stock Crumbles on Weak Streaming Guidance

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Shares of Netflix ( NFLX) plunged in after-hours trading after the movie-streaming company said it expects weaker-streaming additions in the current quarter.

Netflix said that due to increased seasonality, it expects net additions to be below 2010's level. Netflix said it expects to have between 23.6 million and 24.2 million subscribers, implying growth between 200,000 and 800,000 streaming subscribers. It also expects second-quarter revenue to be between $873 million and $895 million, with the mid-point below the $895.11 million in revenue analysts are expecting.

The Los Gatos, Calif-based company said it expects an earnings loss of between 10 cents a share and 14 cents per share. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters are looking for a loss of 17 cents per share.

The online entertainment company posted a first-quarter loss of 8 cents per share on $870 million in revenue. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters had expected a loss of 27 cents a share on $866.93 million in revenue. The company had 26 million subscribers as of the end of the first quarter.

Netflix added 1.74 million domestic streaming subscribers and 1.21 million international streaming subscribers during the quarter. "We anticipate returning to global profitability in Q2, and plan to launch our next international market in Q4," CEO Reed Hastings wrote in his letter to shareholders.

"We are constantly improving our service with better personalization, better user-interfaces, better streaming, and more content," Hastings added. "As a result, per-member viewing hours set new records in Q1 and are on track to do so again in Q2, on a year-over-year basis. We launched our service in the U.K. and Ireland in January and are very pleased that, after the first 90 days, we had substantially more members than we had after the first 90 days of Canada or Latin America."

The CEO also touched on rivals, saying the biggest long-term competition comes from "TV Everywhere offerings." This includes HBO GO from Time Warner ( TWX) and Streampix from Comcast ( CMCSA), among others. He also cited Amazon ( AMZN) Prime and Hulu Plus as competition.

Shares of Netflix finished the regular session lower, off 4% to close at $101.84. Netflix stock plunged in extended-hours trading, down 16.29% to $85.25.

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