After the Fed released minutes of its last meeting, the bond market signaled it fears the Fed will not be aggressive enough with its rate cutting.Market Insiderread more
The Fed minutes also note that "a couple" members wanted a 50 basis point cut, based primarily on the weak inflation readings.The Fedread more
The inversion is seen by many veteran traders as an important recession omen, though the timing on the eventual downturn is less predictable.Bondsread more
Here's what Nordstrom reported for its fiscal second-quarter earnings.Retailread more
The sexy image that once boosted Victoria's Secret has been haunting L Brands more recently, as women are steering clear of the brand's hot pink, lacy and bejeweled lingerie.Retailread more
See which stocks are posting big moves after the bell.Market Insiderread more
"I'd love to say that the optimistic universe is most likely to prevail, but the talking heads talk endlessly about how a recession is inevitable," CNBC's Jim Cramer says.Mad Money with Jim Cramerread more
Read the fine print in your Apple Card contract — one clause means you give up your right to be heard in court.Technologyread more
Federal Reserve members worried over future growth are highly concerned about the U.S.-China tariff battleThe Fedread more
President Donald Trump signed a memorandum on Wednesday to automatically cancel the student loan debt of disabled veterans. More than 25,000 service members will have their...Personal Financeread more
President Trump and Apple CEO Tim Cook have had a rocky relationship in recent years, but Trump is now complimenting the executive publicly.Technologyread more
Analysts say it has held fairly steady in recent years, at about 28 million domestic subscribers, but revenue was up 4 percent last year, to $4.9 billion, while operating income rose 8 percent, to $1.7 billion.
That performance shows just how far Netflix has to go, despite its high-flying share price. Though the on-demand streaming service eclipsed HBO with 33 million domestic subscribers at the end of last year, it had just $228 million in operating income on revenue of $4.4 billion. Meanwhile, free cash flow was negative $16 million.
(Read more: HBO, movies boost Time Warner revenue )
What separates HBO from its younger rival is pricing power. Even without relying heavily on subscriber growth in the U.S., the network's subscription revenue rose 6 percent in 2013 and 8 percent in the fourth quarter. Time Warner said it expects continued fee increases in the mid-single digits, independent of any subscriber increases.
Netflix has stuck largely to a pricing model of a $7.99 flat rate per month, with an $11.99 option for a relatively small number of customers who want to stream on four screens at once. That has probably been a prudent move, given the backlash when it raised prices in 2011.
(Read more: Michael Kors rally won't set a retail trend)
The most likely way for Netflix to raise prices is to offer more of its own original programming. The audience and critical hits "House of Cards" and "Orange Is the New Black" are a step in that direction.
A couple of years ago, Netflix was losing about half of its domestic subscribers every year, but that churn has probably slowed to about 35 percent to 40 percent, estimated Tony Wible of Janney Montgomery Scott.
Unfortunately for Netflix, it could require a much bigger investment in original programming before it has enough loyalty to raise prices significantly.
HBO adds about 200 hours of original content every year, including hit series such as "Game of Thrones," "Boardwalk Empire" and "Girls," along with sports and documentaries. That's on top of the movies it gets soon after theatrical release from Warner Bros., Fox, and Universal Pictures, which is owned by CNBC parent NBCUniversal, a unit of Comcast.
Michael Nathanson of MoffettNathanson estimates that HBO has a cash budget of more than $1 billion a year for original material.
(Read more: Missed the Twitter surge? Meet its Chinese cousin)
Netflix is already spending heavily on content, with $7.3 billion in future obligations as of the end of 2013. Less than 10 percent of the content budget goes to originals, however, suggesting there's a need to ramp up spending further. That may explain why the company just borrowed $400 million through bonds with a 5.75 percent coupon.
Such an investment has no guarantee of a payoff, either. While Netflix has had some early success, others have shown how tough it is to land an enduring hit.
Starz, whose CEO Chris Albrecht had great success developing original series for HBO, is still waiting for a breakthrough series.
Netflix has a market capitalization of $24 billion, about 96 times forward earnings per share. With Time Warner as a whole worth only $56 billion, Netflix investors will need some luck for the stock's run to continue.
—By CNBC's John Jannarone; follow him on Twitter .