3 Value Stocks In The Insurance Sector Now Hitting 2019 Highs

Insurance value stocks making new highs for 2019: all 3 of these can be called “value” because of their low price/earnings ratios and because they trade below book. That’s the beginning of the classic approach to identifying value as described by Warren Buffett’s mentor at Columbia University, Benjamin Graham.

You can read about this type of approach in his book, Security Analysis, or in the much more direct version, The Intelligent Investor. My screen for these only includes those with a steady stream of earnings, which are paying regular dividends and where debt does not reasonably constitute a threat to long-term viability.

Here’s what came up after markets closed for the week:

AXA Equitable Holdings, Inc. trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol EQH. The insurance broker, based in New York City, was established in 1859.

Earnings over the last year have been excellent and the 5-year record of earnings is positive as well. Right now, long-term debt slightly exceeds shareholder equity, a concern. The company pays a 2.33% dividend.

AXA Equitable has moved from 15 at the Christmas Eve, 2018 low to its present price of 22. That’s about a 50% gain in a very short period of time, not the kind of move you might typically expect in a low p/e stock in the insurance business.

Lincoln National Corporation is Radnor, Pennsylvania headquartered and trades on the New York Stock Exchange. According to the company’s website, they’ve been around since 1905.

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