Aflac Inc (AFL): Today's Featured Insurance Winner

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.

Aflac ( AFL) pushed the Insurance industry higher today making it today's featured insurance winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.4%. By the end of trading, Aflac rose $0.63 (1.0%) to $62.35 on average volume. Throughout the day, 1,799,647 shares of Aflac exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,966,200 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $61.19-$62.52 after having opened the day at $61.44 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $61.72. Other companies within the Insurance industry that increased today were: MGIC Investment Corporation ( MTG), up 4.9%, Crawford & Company ( CRD.B), up 3.8%, State Auto Financial Corporation ( STFC), up 3.1% and Universal Insurance Holdings ( UVE), up 3.0%.

Aflac Incorporated, through its subsidiary, American Family Life Assurance Company of Columbus, provides supplemental health and life insurance products. It operates through two segments, Aflac Japan and Aflac U.S. Aflac has a market cap of $28.8 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are down 7.6% year to date as of the close of trading on Monday. Currently there are 7 analysts that rate Aflac a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 8 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Aflac as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in stock price during the past year, notable return on equity, growth in earnings per share, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the negative front, Baldwin & Lyons ( BWINA), down 4.3%, Atlantic American ( AAME), down 2.2%, ING Groep N.V ( ING), down 2.0% and Hilltop Holdings ( HTH), down 1.7% , were all laggards within the insurance industry with Arthur J. Gallagher ( AJG) being today's insurance industry laggard.

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).

3x UPSIDE POTENTIAL: TheStreet Quant Ratings has identified a handful of stocks that can potentially TRIPLE in the next 12-months. Learn more.

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