Roku shares spike ahead of earnings

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Shares of Roku popped Wednesday, ahead of the company’s first-quarter financial report after the bell.

The stock price was up 9.2 percent to $36.16 a share in midday trading. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expect Roku have a loss of 15 cents per share in the first quarter on revenue of $127.6 million.

Roku went public last year in one of 2017’s more successful IPOs. The shares have risen more than 170 percent over the past year, as the company has taken advantage of the trend of streaming video from online sources like Amazon, Netflix and Hulu. Netflix revealed last month that it added far more users than expected in the first quarter.

Roku devices that connect to TVs have become particularly trendy. A new report from research firm Conviva said Wednesday that connected TV streaming in the home has tripled since 2015, replacing computers as the “platform of choice for binge-watching.”

Stacey Gilbert, head of derivative strategy at Susquehanna, told CNBC’s “Trading Nation” that she thinks the shares could move higher after the earnings report, based on her analysis of the options market. In November, the stock rose 55 percent after quarterly results were released.

Still, most Wall Street analysts surveyed by FactSet have a hold rating on Roku’s stock, rather than buy or sell.

“While the company is one of a handful leading the transition to over-the-top, on demand video consumption from viewing by appointment, we believe the current share price already reflects our favorable view of Roku and its long-term growth potential,” D.A. Davidson analyst Tom Forte wrote last month.

Disclosure: Comcast, which owns CNBC parent NBCUniversal, is a co-owner of Hulu.

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