Week's Winners and Losers: McDonald's Slides, Spotify Rides
Netflix (NFLX) -- Winner
The leading premium streaming video service continues to be a globetrotter. Netflix announced that it would be expanding into Italy and Portugal in October. A strong push overseas has helped push Netflix to more than 60 million global subscribers with a third of those located outside of the U.S. market.
Another reason that Netflix is a winner this week is that it made the third season of "Orange Is the New Black" available on Thursday night, several hours before it was supposed to be released.
Harley-Davidson (HOG) -- Loser
The leading motorcycle company is slowing down. Wedbush analyst James Hardiman downgraded his rating on Harley-Davidson, slashing his price target from $75 all the way down to $57.
Hardiman's opinion soured after channel checks showed unimpressive demand through April and May, particularly on the entry-level end of the market. With kind weather and the relaunch of Harley's Road Glide, this should have been a strong springtime for Harley-Davidson, but at least one analyst doesn't see it playing out that way.
Spotify -- Winner
This was supposed to be Apple's (AAPL) week to make waves on the digital music front. The consumer tech giant used its annual WWDC expo for developers to introduce Apple Music, a streaming platform that incorporates the best of its existing offerings.
However, Spotify quickly found a way to deflate Apple's balloon by announcing that it now has more than 20 million paying subscribers. Getting folks to pay for music online has been the industry's biggest challenge, and it's where Spotify is clearly excelling.
McDonald's (MCD) -- Loser
We're not getting any closer to a turnaround at McDonald's, at least when it comes to its stateside restaurants. The world's largest burger chain posted another month of negative store-level sales on Monday with year-over-year comparable-store sales declining 0.3 percent worldwide in May. Things got even worse at its struggling domestic eateries, where comps clocked in with a 2.2 percent slide.
Making matters worse, McDonald's recently announced that it would stop providing monthly sales data starting next month. In other words, we'll have to deal with quarterly snapshots out of Mickey D's. It's true that having monthly updates was a luxury for investors, but it sure seems as if McDonald's is suspending the practice because it's tired of dishing out bad news.
PepsiCo (PEP) -- Winner
The world's second-largest carbonated beverage company is bringing back a cult fave. PepsiCo strongly suggested that it's bringing Crystal Pepsi back after YouTube celebrity L.A. Beast turned to his more than 1.2 million followers to help him bankroll a campaign that was anchored by 15 billboards and an active online presence.
It's a smart move, even if Crystal Pepsi only had a brief shelf life that lasted between 1992 and 1993. It's not just about the appeal to the folks who are old enough to have tried the original. The buzz will naturally smoke out a lot of younger soda drinkers to check out the clear and caffeinated beverage.
Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz owns shares of Netflix. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Apple, Netflix and PepsiCo. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. Looking for a winner for your portfolio? Check out The Motley Fool's one great stock to buy for 2015 and beyond.