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Should Value Investors Buy Axis Capital Holdings (AXS) Stock?

The proven Zacks Rank system focuses on earnings estimates and estimate revisions to find winning stocks. Nevertheless, we know that our readers all have their own perspectives, so we are always looking at the latest trends in value, growth, and momentum to find strong picks.

Of these, perhaps no stock market trend is more popular than value investing, which is a strategy that has proven to be successful in all sorts of market environments. Value investors rely on traditional forms of analysis on key valuation metrics to find stocks that they believe are undervalued, leaving room for profits.

Zacks has developed the innovative Style Scores system to highlight stocks with specific traits. For example, value investors will be interested in stocks with great grades in the "Value" category. When paired with a high Zacks Rank, "A" grades in the Value category are among the strongest value stocks on the market today.

One company to watch right now is Axis Capital Holdings (AXS). AXS is currently holding a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy) and a Value grade of A.

Investors should also note that AXS holds a PEG ratio of 1.56. This popular figure is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but the PEG ratio also considers a company's expected EPS growth rate. AXS's industry currently sports an average PEG of 2.46. AXS's PEG has been as high as 2.62 and as low as 1.43, with a median of 1.83, all within the past year.

We should also highlight that AXS has a P/B ratio of 1.22. The P/B ratio pits a stock's market value against its book value, which is defined as total assets minus total liabilities. This stock's P/B looks attractive against its industry's average P/B of 1.43. Over the past year, AXS's P/B has been as high as 1.22 and as low as 0.88, with a median of 1.03.

Value investors also use the P/S ratio. The P/S ratio is is calculated as price divided by sales. This is a prefered metric because revenue can't really be manipulated, so sales are often a truer performance indicator. AXS has a P/S ratio of 0.9. This compares to its industry's average P/S of 0.91.

Finally, we should also recognize that AXS has a P/CF ratio of 9.55. This metric takes into account a company's operating cash flow and can be used to find stocks that are undervalued based on their solid cash outlook. AXS's current P/CF looks attractive when compared to its industry's average P/CF of 26.64. Within the past 12 months, AXS's P/CF has been as high as 9.55 and as low as 6, with a median of 7.66.

If you're looking for another solid Insurance - Property and Casualty value stock, take a look at CNA Financial (CNA). CNA is a # 2 (Buy) stock with a Value score of A.

Shares of CNA Financial are currently trading at a forward earnings multiple of 10.20 and a PEG ratio of 2.04 compared to its industry's P/E and PEG ratios of 26.13 and 2.46, respectively.

CNA's Forward P/E has been as high as 11.41 and as low as 8.99, with a median of 10.27. During the same time period, its PEG ratio has been as high as 2.28, as low as 1.80, with a median of 2.05.

CNA Financial sports a P/B ratio of 1.19 as well; this compares to its industry's price-to-book ratio of 1.43. In the past 52 weeks, CNA's P/B has been as high as 1.29, as low as 0.89, with a median of 1.09.

These are only a few of the key metrics included in Axis Capital Holdings and CNA Financial strong Value grade, but they help show that the stocks are likely undervalued right now. When factoring in the strength of its earnings outlook, AXS and CNA look like an impressive value stock at the moment.


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