Allstate Corp (ALL): 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.

Allstate ( ALL) pushed the Insurance industry higher today making it today's featured insurance winner. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.2%. By the end of trading, Allstate rose $0.73 (1.3%) to $56.84 on average volume. Throughout the day, 3,261,931 shares of Allstate exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2,864,200 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $56.29-$57.05 after having opened the day at $56.37 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $56.11. Other companies within the Insurance industry that increased today were: National Security Group ( NSEC), up 6.5%, 1347 Property Insurance Holdings ( PIH), up 5.3%, United Insurance Holdings ( UIHC), up 4.8% and CNinsure ( CISG), up 3.4%.

The Allstate Corporation, through its subsidiaries, provides personal property and casualty insurance, life insurance, and retirement and investment products primarily in the United States. Allstate has a market cap of $25.2 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 11.5, below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 2.9% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday. Currently there are 10 analysts that rate Allstate a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 10 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Allstate 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, growth in earnings per share and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.

On the negative front, CNA Financial ( CNA), down 6.9%, eHealth ( EHTH), down 5.6%, Fidelity and Guaranty Life ( FGL), down 3.7% and Navigators Group ( NAVG), down 3.5% , were all laggards within the insurance industry with Lincoln National Corp (Radnor ( LNC) 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).

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