Allstate Corp (ALL): Today's Featured Financial Winner

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.

Allstate ( ALL) pushed the Financial sector higher today making it today's featured financial winner. The sector as a whole closed the day up 0.6%. By the end of trading, Allstate rose 64 cents (1.7%) to $38.92 on average volume. Throughout the day, 5.3 million shares of Allstate exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3.7 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $38.02-$38.99 after having opened the day at $38.45 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $38.28. Other companies within the Financial sector that increased today were: Capital City Bank Group ( CCBG), up 16.9%, Oak Ridge Financial Services ( BKOR), up 11.3%, Greene County Bancorp ( GCBC), up 10.3%, and Noah Holdings ( NOAH), up 9.6%.
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The Allstate Corporation, through its subsidiaries, engages in the personal property and casualty insurance, life insurance, and retirement and investment products business primarily in the United States. Allstate has a market cap of $18.47 billion and is part of the insurance industry. The company has a P/E ratio of 7.3, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 39.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 12 analysts that rate Allstate a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 13 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Allstate as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, compelling growth in net income, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, 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 negative front, SGOCO Group ( SGOC), down 21.1%, Village Bank and Trust Financial Corporatio ( VBFC), down 19.2%, Credit Suisse ( DOIL), down 14.2%, and Porter Bancorp ( PBIB), down 10.9%, were all laggards within the financial sector with Credit Suisse Group ( CS) being today's financial sector laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the financial sector could consider Financial Select Sector SPDR ( XLF) while those bearish on the financial sector could consider Proshares Short Financials ( SEF).

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