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Finance Netflix is surging after adding a lot more subscribers than expected (NFLX)

The streaming giant said it made an $0.64 per share in the first quarter.

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(Markets Insider)

Shares of Netflix jumped more than 8% Monday, reversing their losses from earlier in the day, after the streaming giant beat added millions more subscribers than analysts had expected.

Netflix said it earned an adjusted $0.64 per share on revenue of $3.7 billion. Both matched Wall Street expectations.

Subscriber growth is a closely watched metric for investors. The company said it added 1.96 million new customers domestically and 5.46 million internationally — both above the expected 1.45 million at home and 4.98 million international.

This continued subscriber growth has been pushed forward by the strength of Netflix's original TV shows, both in quality and quantity. In Q1, Netflix released a few high-profile originals like sci-fi series "Altered Carbon," David Letterman's new talk show, the "Queer Eye" reboot, and a new season of "Jessica Jones."

Netflix has also jumped into movies in a serious way, and plans to release 80 original films in 2018. This hasn't been without its problems, as Netflix has publicly sparred with the Cannes Film Festival and recently decided to not screen any of its original films there. Hollywood insiders are split on whether this will affect Netflix's business in a tangible way.

All these original TV shows and movies haven't been cheap. Netflix has said it will spend $8 billion on content in 2018 and expects negative free cash flow to rise to $3 billion.

"We’re investing in more marketing of new original titles to create more density of viewing and conversation around each title (i.e bigger hit in a nation or demographic)," the company said in a press release. "We believe this density of viewing helps on both retention and acquisition, because it makes our original titles even less substitutable."

Shares of Netflix have easily outpaced their peers in the so-called FAANG basket in 2018 so far, rising more than 52% compared to second-place Amazon's 23%.

Nathan McAlone contributed to this report.