The insurance industry closed the day up 3.9%. Baldwin & Lyons Inc ( BWINA) and Affirmative Insurance Holdings Inc ( AFFM) were all decliners today within the insurance industry with National Western Life Insurance ( NWLI) being today's featured insurance loser. National Western Life Insurance fell $3 (-2.1%) to $138.77 on light volume. Throughout the day, 6,779 shares of National Western Life Insurance exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 9,200 shares.

National Western Life Insurance Company provides life insurance products for the savings and protection needs of policyholders and annuity contracts for the asset accumulation and retirement needs of contract holders. National Western Life Insurance has a market cap of $459.4 million and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 7.2, equal to the average insurance industry P/E ratio and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 15.5% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

TheStreet Ratings rates National Western Life as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust 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 unimpressive growth in net income, weak operating cash flow and poor profit margins.

On the positive front, MGIC Investment Corporation ( MTG), Crawford & Company ( CRD.B), Kingsway Financial Services Inc ( KFS), and Radian Group Inc ( RDN) were all gainers within the insurance industry with Berkshire Hathaway Inc ( BRK.B) being today's featured insurance industry winner.

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).
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