Manulife Financial Corporation (MFC): Today's Featured Insurance Laggard

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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 $0.24 (-1.2%) to $19.03 on average volume. Throughout the day, 1,585,840 shares of Manulife Financial Corporation exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2,092,500 shares. The stock ranged in price between $19.01-$19.42 after having opened the day at $19.30 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $19.27. Other companies within the Insurance industry that declined today were: National Security Group ( NSEC), down 6.1%, Aviva ( AV), down 3.2%, Universal Insurance Holdings ( UVE), down 3.1% and Prudential ( PUK), down 2.8%.

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. The company operates through Asia, Canadian, and U.S. Manulife Financial Corporation has a market cap of $35.7 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are down 2.3% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 5 analysts that rate Manulife Financial Corporation a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Manulife Financial Corporation as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, expanding profit margins, notable return on equity and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the positive front, Kingstone Companies ( KINS), up 4.3%, Independence Holding Company ( IHC), up 3.7%, Phoenix Companies ( PNX), up 1.8% and Blue Capital Reinsurance Holdings ( BCRH), up 1.7% , 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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