The insurance industry closed the day down 1.4%. CNinsure Inc ( CISG), State Auto Financial ( STFC), OneBeacon Insurance Group ( OB), and Affirmative Insurance Holdings Inc ( AFFM) were all winners today within the insurance industry with Everest Re Group ( RE) being today's featured insurance winner. Everest Re Group rose 41 cents (0.5%) to $79.67 on average volume. Throughout the day, 359,638 shares of Everest Re Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 430,000 shares. Everest Re Group, Ltd., together with its subsidiaries, underwrites reinsurance and insurance in the United States (the U.S.), Bermuda, and international markets. The company operates in five segments: U.S. Reinsurance, U.S. Insurance, Specialty Underwriting, International, and Bermuda. Everest Re Group has a market cap of $4.2 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.5, above the average insurance industry P/E ratio of 15.3 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 8.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. TheStreet Ratings rates Everest Re Group as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and attractive valuation levels. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including feeble growth in the company's earnings per share, disappointing return on equity and weak operating cash flow.
For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the insurance industry could consider KBW Insurance ETF ( KIE) while those bearish on the insurance industry could consider Proshares Short Financials ( SEF).