Did Kevin Spacey Give Netflix its Massive Boost?

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For the first time in its corporate history, Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) earned more than $1 billion in revenue, indicating that the company’s original programming bet has paid off.

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In the first quarter — which saw the launch of Netflix’s biggest original series to date, House of Cards, starring Kevin Spacey, the company signed up 2.03 million new U.S. streaming subscribers. This strong gain in subscribers helped the video-streaming provider beat analysts earnings estimates: the company reported profits of 31 cents per share when first-quarter results were released after markets closed Monday. This figure soared above the 20 cents per share analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had predicted.

Netflix reported sales of $1.02 billion, in line with expectations, but shares still jumped as much as 24 percent in after-hours trading…

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