February 14, 2011, 11:02 PM — When last we discussed Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX), back in late December, shares of the online streaming media star were down 15 percent from an all-time high of 209.24 set three weeks earlier, prompting chief executive Reed Hastings to cheerfully warn Wall Street "shorts" that they were betting against the wrong company.
Nearly two months later, Hastings looks prescient (for now). Netflix shares on Monday closed at an all-time high of 247.55, or 7.1 percent above Friday's closing price of 231.07.
It doesn't seem to take much, if anything, to move Netflix shares north these days, but on Monday there appeared to be a genuine catalyst. Qualcomm said it was working on a special version of its Snapdragon chip platform that would enable future Android-powered smartphones to instantly stream movies and TV shows from Netflix.
Is that news alone worth a 7 percent bump in Netflix share price, especially when the stock already is overvalued relative to revenue and earnings? Probably not. But Netflix is in the bubble, which means investors treat good news like it's great news, and great news like they knew it would happen because, you know, they're brilliant investors.
And right now anyone who owns shares of Netflix -- especially if they bought more than six months ago, when the stock was valued at half its current price -- looks like a brilliant investor. Here's the stock chart for Netflix since it went public in May 2002 at $15 a share.
As you can see, nearly everyone who has invested in Netflix is a genius. So far.
Chris Nerney writes about the business side of technology market strategies and trends, legal issues, leadership changes, mergers, venture capital, IPOs and technology stocks. Follow him on Twitter @ChrisNerney.