Netflix To Expense Options

from the path-blazer-or-turncoat? dept

Some folks in Silicon Valley are surprised that “one of their own”, Netflix, has agreed to expense stock options on their latest quarterly report. The more I listen to both sides on this debate, the more convinced I am that it really doesn’t matter. Expensing stock options or not expensing stock options has no direct impact on the overall health of a business and its cash flow. Most intelligent investors and analysts can pretty quickly adjust their view of the company depending on how it accounts for options, and so it doesn’t really change anything. It might have some impact in superficial things, like how quickly a company reaches financial profitability – which could impact some other decisions they make, just to please certain analysts. It’s also likely to make companies slightly less willing to hand out as many stock options, but I imagine most companies will find ways around that, and will still come up with plenty of innovative ways to incentivize their employees.

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