Hartford Financial Services Group Inc (HIG): Today's Featured Insurance Laggard

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

Hartford Financial Services Group ( HIG) pushed the Insurance industry lower today making it today's featured Insurance laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.6%. By the end of trading, Hartford Financial Services Group fell 32 cents (-1.6%) to $20.02 on light volume. Throughout the day, 4.5 million shares of Hartford Financial Services Group exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 6.4 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $19.91-$20.33 after having opened the day at $20.24 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $20.34. Other companies within the Insurance industry that declined today were: National Security Group ( NSEC), down 7.8%, Radian Group ( RDN), down 3.8%, Assured Guaranty ( AGO), down 3.4%, and Crawford & Company ( CRD.A), down 3%.
  • ACTIVE STOCK TRADERS: Get full access to Jim Cramer's thoughts for less than $3/week - sometimes before he says them on TV! Start with a 14-Day Free Trial.

The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides insurance and financial services primarily in the United States and Japan. Hartford Financial Services Group has a market cap of $8.68 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 110.6, above the average insurance industry P/E ratio of 58.6 and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 25.2% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are six analysts that rate Hartford Financial Services Group a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and seven rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Hartford Financial Services Group as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, reasonable valuation levels and increase in stock price during the past year. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including deteriorating net income, 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).

FREE from Real Money's Jim Cramer: Winners and Losers Election 2012 - Steps to take NOW so you can profit no matter who is in charge! Free download now.
null

If you liked this article you might like

Buffett's Berkshire, Rivals Brace for Billions in Hurricane Harvey Claims

Cramer: Let's Handicap Hurricane Harvey's Best Stock Bets

Mid-afternoon Musings; Amazon Shorting: Doug Kass' Views

Truth Is, Intrinsic Value, not Price, Is Truth in Investing

Takeaways and Observations; Church of What Is Working Now: Doug Kass' Views