This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Aflac: Best-in-Breed, Limited Downside Risk

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- It's easy to like a public company that raises its dividend for 31 years in a row, and that's why I like Aflac (AFL - Get Report), a dominant player in the supplemental insurance industry with one of the strongest distribution networks of any insurer today.

Aflac is an example of a best-in-breed stock for investors who like rising annual dividends and the potential for growth in a sector with plenty of staying power. Buy it at the right price and with a little patience the total return potential should be rewarding, with limited downside risk.

The Columbus, Ga.-based company provides supplemental health and life insurance products. It's the #1 U.S. provider of supplemental health insurance sold at places of employment. It's also the largest international insurer in Japan, where it derives about 80% of its earnings and more than 75% of its revenue.

For shareholders, Aflac offers a competitive dividend yield and a generous, ongoing stock buyback program. The combination of an increasing dividend and a stock buyback program is referred to as "shareholder yield," an important component in an investment's total returns. Shares are currently down 2.9% for the year to date as of the Wednesday close of $64.

If you buy AFL shares at $64, your yield-to-price would be 2.31%. According to Yahoo! Finance, the estimated one-year target share price is $71. So let's do the math.

Purchasing at $64 with a one-year target price of $71 equates to nearly an 11% potential gain. Plus, you'll be paid a dividend of 37 cents per share each quarter for staying invested. With Aflac's history, the dividend may be increased the first year you own it, and your yield moves even higher. 

Investors who don't overpay for a stock will like that Aflac trades at a forward (one-year) PE ratio of less than 10. Then there's the company's share-buyback program.

In the fourth quarter of 2013, Aflac repurchased $502 million, or 7.6 million shares, of its common stock. For all of last year the company purchased $800 million, or 13.2 million, of its shares. At the end of December, the company had 49.2 million shares available for purchase with its current buyback authorization.

1 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
AFL $63.73 2.20%
AAPL $122.62 -0.62%
FB $95.54 0.26%
GOOG $625.48 -0.40%
TSLA $264.94 0.04%

Markets

Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,734.86 +104.59 0.59%
S&P 500 2,105.16 +11.91 0.57%
NASDAQ 5,102.8630 +13.6570 0.27%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs