Alibaba Group Holding debunked an unconfirmed report that surfaced early on Friday that it was preparing a potential bid for Netflix Inc. . "We are not preparing any investment into Netflix," an Alibaba spokesperson told MarketWatch by phone. Shares of Netflix traded up nearly 4% on Friday after the report surfaced, closing around $97.03. They've risen 9.5% in the past three months, outperforming the S&P 500 , which is up 6.5%. They've underperformed on the year, however, falling nearly 22% in the past 12 months, versus a 4% improvement for the S&P. Separately, Netflix told MarketWatch that it doesn't comment on rumors or speculation but that it has been "pretty clear about China and [its] long-term goals there." When the company reported earnings in July, Netflix commented on the tough regulatory environment in China and said the climate for its service "has become more challenging" there, but that it continues to explore options.
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