Today marks the 15th anniversary of Netflix’s (NXLX) IPO, and while its 14,500% return since going public almost seems puny relative to Amazon (AMZN), at this point in AMZN’s lifetime, it was up “just” 11,400%. Who knows what the next five years will bring for Netflix (NFLX), but whatever you want to say about the company’s stock price, the way the company shifted from mail order to streaming before most of the population even knew what streaming even meant is one of the most noteworthy business decisions of all time.
Similar to what we pointed out in our post on AMZN last week, the ride higher for NFLX has been anything but smooth and serves as another lesson for investors that it is never ‘easy’ to buy and hold the biggest winners in the stock market. With big gains usually comes big swings and big risk. Take a look at the chart below which shows NFLX’s historical drawdowns from all-time highs. Including an 82% drop in late 2012, NFLX has been fraught with huge pullbacks. In fact, in its 15 years as a public company, NFLX has been down at least 30% from an all-time high in more than 40% of its time as a public company.
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