SEC STALKER: Netflix Founder Wants To Split $425,000 Pay Day With The Government


Netflix (NFLX) founder and CEO Reed Hastings sold 10,000 shares of the company at $42.52 for a nice $425,200 pay day on May 7. But Reed’s not very happy about it.

That’s because even though Reed’s 400 big ones could buy an “extreme” Lamborghini, WWE wrestler Brock Lesnar’s aeroplane, or even a comprehensive study on gay sex in Argentinian bars, Reed would rather hand over half of that money to Uncle Sam.

You see, Reed is not just a noted supporter of Charter Schools and sponsor of Wofford College’s “award for moral courage,” he’s also an outspoken proponent of the Swedish model of taxation — a “50% levy on the ultra-rich,” according to the Motley Fool. 

By the “ultra-rich” Reed says he means “hedge fund managers, star athletes, stunning movie stars, venture capitalists and the chief executives of private companies.”

“The president should take advantage of our success by using our outsized earnings to pay for the needs of our nation,” he says. “Please tax me more.”

Many Americans have a hard time understanding this position.

Clusterstock’s John Carney is one of them.

Does he just want to punish the ultra-rich or raise more revenues? At some point, higher tax rates return less revenues because people avoid the taxes, defer income, off-shore income and will simply choose more leisure over getting paid just 50 cents on every dollar they earn. Reed doesn’t seem to have done much thinking about the Laffer Curve effect on tax returns, which makes his proposal just silly.

SEC filings are boring and hard to understand but often give revealing tibits about the companies we cover. In SEC Stalker, we translate these filings back into English, revealing the plays and people behind the companies we know so well.

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