Manulife Financial Corporation (MFC): 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

Manulife Financial Corporation ( MFC) pushed the Insurance industry lower today making it today's featured Insurance laggard. The industry as a whole was unchanged today. By the end of trading, Manulife Financial Corporation fell $0.20 (-1.2%) to $16.01 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 4,021,548 shares of Manulife Financial Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,822,400 shares. The stock ranged in price between $15.77-$16.20 after having opened the day at $16.14 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $16.21. Other companies within the Insurance industry that declined today were: Crawford & Company ( CRD.B), down 5.2%, Validus Holdings ( VR), down 3.9%, OneBeacon Insurance Group ( OB), down 3.0% and Crawford & Company ( CRD.A), down 2.8%.
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Manulife Financial Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, provides financial protection and wealth management products and services to individual, corporate, and business customers primarily in Asia, Canada, and the United States. Manulife Financial Corporation has a market cap of $29.5 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 30.9, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 19.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 6 analysts that rate Manulife Financial Corporation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Manulife Financial Corporation as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, solid stock price performance and notable return on equity. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company's profit margins have been poor overall.

On the positive front, Life Partners Holdings ( LPHI), down 8.8%, Argo Group International Holdings ( AGII), down 5.7%, EMC Insurance Group ( EMCI), down 4.2% and Independence Holding Company ( IHC), down 4.0% , were all gainers within the insurance industry with Allstate ( ALL) 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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