Axis Capital Holdings Ltd (AXS): Today's Featured Insurance Laggard

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

Axis Capital Holdings ( AXS) pushed the Insurance industry lower today making it today's featured Insurance laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.3%. By the end of trading, Axis Capital Holdings fell $1.94 (-4.4%) to $42.39 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 2,666,106 shares of Axis Capital Holdings exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 662,900 shares. The stock ranged in price between $41.82-$43.47 after having opened the day at $42.91 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $44.33. Other companies within the Insurance industry that declined today were: Citizens ( CIA), down 4.0%, Stewart Information Services ( STC), down 3.4%, Phoenix Companies ( PNX), down 2.7% and Enstar Group ( ESGR), down 2.1%.

AXIS Capital Holdings Limited provides specialty lines insurance and treaty reinsurance products in Bermuda, the United States, Europe, Singapore, Canada, Australia, and Latin America. Axis Capital Holdings has a market cap of $5.1 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are down 6.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 7 analysts that rate Axis Capital Holdings a buy, 1 analyst rates it a sell, and 3 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Axis Capital Holdings 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, good cash flow from operations, solid stock price performance and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the positive front, National Interstate Corporation ( NATL), up 30.9%, Radian Group ( RDN), up 6.0%, Life Partners Holdings ( LPHI), up 5.4% and MBIA ( MBI), up 3.7% , were all gainers within the insurance industry with Hartford Financial Services Group ( HIG) 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).

STOCKS TO BUY: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

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