MetLife Inc (MET): Today's Featured Insurance Loser

MetLife ( MET) pushed the Insurance industry lower today making it today's featured Insurance loser. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.6%. By the end of trading, MetLife fell 50 cents (-1.6%) to $30.39 on light volume. Throughout the day, 5.3 million shares of MetLife exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 9.3 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $30.21-$30.84 after having opened the day at $30.84 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $30.89. Other company's within the Insurance industry that declined today were: United Fire Group ( UFCS), down 5%, Crawford & Company ( CRD.B), down 4.8%, Crawford & Company ( CRD.A), down 4.2%, and SeaBright Holdings ( SBX), down 3.6%.

MetLife, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides insurance, annuities, and employee benefit programs in the United States, Japan, Latin America, the Asia Pacific, Europe, and the Middle East. MetLife has a market cap of $31.74 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 5.5, below the average insurance industry P/E ratio of 5.7 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 4.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 16 analysts that rate MetLife a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and three rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates MetLife as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, reasonable valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income, poor profit margins and a generally disappointing performance in the stock itself.

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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