Travelers Companies Inc. (TRV): 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.

Travelers Companies ( TRV) pushed the Insurance industry lower today making it today's featured Insurance laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.6%. By the end of trading, Travelers Companies fell 71 cents (-1%) to $70.23 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 5.2 million shares of Travelers Companies exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.3 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $69.73-$72.12 after having opened the day at $71.19 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $70.94. Other companies within the Insurance industry that declined today were: Greenlight Capital Re ( GLRE), down 5.7%, Montpelier RE Holdings ( MRH), down 3.7%, Endurance Specialty Holdings ( ENH), down 3.3%, and National Security Group ( NSEC), down 3.2%.
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The Travelers Companies, Inc., through its subsidiaries, provides various commercial and personal property and casualty insurance products and services to businesses, government units, associations, and individuals primarily in the United States. Travelers Companies has a market cap of $27.3 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 10.3, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 20.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 11 analysts that rate Travelers Companies a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 11 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Travelers Companies as a buy. 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, solid stock price performance, attractive valuation levels and good cash flow from operations. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows low profit margins.

On the positive front, Radian Group ( RDN), up 14.5%, MGIC Investment Corporation ( MTG), up 12.8%, CNinsure ( CISG), up 7.3%, and Investors Title Company ( ITIC), up 5.9%, were all gainers within the insurance industry with Berkshire Hathaway ( BRK.B) being today's featured insurance industry leader.

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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