Shares of Symetra Financial Corporation (SYA) touched a new 52-week high, reaching $21.35 in the second half of the trading session on Jun 2. The stock closed at $21.31, reflecting a solid return of 51.9% over the past one year. The trading volume for the session was 0.3 million shares.
Despite the strong price appreciation, this Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stock has plenty of upside left, given its sturdy estimate revisions over the last 60 days.
Impressive first-quarter 2014 results, along with prudent expense management were the primary growth drivers for Symetra Financial.
Symetra Financial reported first-quarter 2014 results on Apr 23. Adjusted earnings of 56 cents per share outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 36.6%. Results benefited from lower expenses and a slight rise in net investment income, partially offset by a decline in premiums.
Additionally, based on strong first-quarter results, Symetra Financial revised its earnings outlook higher. The company anticipates adjusted operating income per share of $1.80-$2.00 for full-year 2014.
Estimate Revisions Show Strength
Over the last 60 days, all 7 estimates for 2014 have been revised upward, lifting the Zacks Consensus Estimate by roughly 9.9% to $1.88 per share. For 2015, 5 out of 7 estimates moved north over the same time frame, leading the Zacks Consensus Estimate to rise nearly 3.3% to $1.89 per share.
Some other insurance stocks worth considering include First American Financial Corporation (FAF), The Travelers Companies, Inc. (TRV) and National General Holdings Corp. (NGHC). All of these carry the same Zacks Rank as Symetra Financial.