Opening Bell: Netflix's growth spurt, the IMF's Irish warning, 1,245 jobs announced around Ireland

Get up to speed with today's breaking Irish and international business news

Netflix shares are in high demand after the company announced a significant increase in earnings last night.

The streaming service announced stronger than expected subscriber growth during its fourth quarter.

Strong international performance pushed Netflix's total number of subscribers to 5.6 million - analysts had expected this figure to be closer to 5.1 million. Its shares rose by 12% in after-hours trading.

Revenue climbed to $1.82bn, up from $1.48bn a year earlier.

CEO Reed Hastings says that the company will continue to invest in growing its international its user base, before returning “material” global profits during 2017.

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The International Monetary Fund says Ireland must maintain fiscal discipline.

It has finished its fourth post-programme monitoring following Ireland's exit from the EU/IMF Bailout programme in December 2013.

The IMF says the Irish economy continues to progress at a strong pace, however, challenges still remain.

It is warning against cuts and changes to the Universal Social Charge, being proposed by Fine Gael, Labour, Fianna Fail and Sinn Fein ahead of the general election.

It also says measures to boost housing supply are welcome in order to stimulate construction activity.

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Nua Healthcare plans to create 800 jobs during the next three years - with the first 300 positions being filled during this year.

Boxever, an online marketing company for the travel industry - is to create 100 new jobs in Dublin. The firm is to recruit data scientists and software engineers.

Environmental services company Veolia has also announced this it will fill 300 new posts during the next five years.

Meanwhile, Netigate, a leading European provider of cloud-based services for online surveys has announced 45 jobs.

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International Business Machines Corp (IBM) has forecast that its earnings will struggle during 2016 as a fall off in IT spending and the strenght of the US dollar affected its performance.

Shares fell by 3% as the company forecast earnings of $13.50 per share - missing analysts' estimate of $15 per share.

The improved performance of the dollar reduced the company's revenues by $7bn, and profits by $300m.