A tame inflation report and a business as usual report on weekly jobless claims failed to generate any continued buzz in stocks. Even the Philly Fed being positive for eight months in a row failed to create much interest. With the S&P 500 hitting new highs and the Dow Jones industrial Average close to new highs this week, investors took profits.
What is interesting is that the DJIA had seen triple-digit moves each day this week, and we did see at one point where the DJIA was down by about 101 points again. We would point out that the selling was broad-based on Thursday. Only 8 of the 30 DJIA stocks had gains as of the final few minutes of trading. Here were the�four standout Dow stocks this Thursday.
UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (NYSE: UNH) saw more give-back on earnings. This is the largest health insurance provider out there and it is hard to imagine that things would have been great with the healthcare initiative being such a blunder. Shares were down by 2.2% at $73.14 right before the closing bell on Thursday.
Top 5 China Stocks To Invest In 2015: National Health Partners Inc (NHPR)
National Health Partners, Inc., incorporated on March 10, 1989, is a national healthcare membership organization that was formed to address the need for affordable healthcare nationwide. The Company creates, markets and sells membership programs targeted toward underserved markets in the healthcare industry through a national healthcare savings network called CARExpress. CARExpress is a network of over 1,000,000 participating hospitals, doctors, dentists, pharmacists and other healthcare providers that have agreed to render their services and products to the Company's members at discounted prices. CARExpress enables the Company's members to engage in point-of-service transactions directly with participating healthcare providers and pay discounted prices.
The Company has designed membership programs that range from its traditional health discount programs that provide access to networks of providers that have agreed to provide its members with a reduced rate for services, to membership programs that include limited liability insurance benefits. The Company offers two families of CARExpress membership programs to its members, its CARExpress health discount programs, and its CARExpress Plus membership programs.
The Company's CARExpress health discount programs consists of healthcare, including physicians, hospitals, ancillary services, dentists, prescription drugs, vision care, hearing aids, chiropractic services, alternative care, 24-hour nurseline, medical supplies and equipment, and long-term care facilities, which include skilled nursing facilities, assisted living facilities, respite care and home health care. The Company provides its members with access to over 1,000,000 healthcare providers through its agreements with CareMark, Aetna, Optum, Outlook Vision, Integrated Health, Three Rivers, International Med-Care and HealthFi International.
The Company's CARExpress Plus programs are membership programs consists of the Company's CARExpress health discount progr! ams and limited liability insurance benefits underwritten by United States.The limited liability insurance benefits included in these programs are accidental death and dismemberment coverage (AD&D), accident medical expense coverage (AME), accident disability coverage, a daily hospital and intensive care unit (ICU) benefit, doctor visit benefits, inpatient/outpatient surgical visit benefits, as well as emergency room and ambulance benefits. With CARExpress Plus, the Company's health discount programs provide its members with a point of service discount on their healthcare expenses at the time of service. The Company offers three standard CARExpress Plus programs, which include CARExpress Plus Platinum Program, CARExpress Plus Gold Program and CARExpress Plus Silver Program.
The Company competes with Alliance HealthCard, Inc., AmeriPlan, Best Benefits, Careington International, Family Care, Full Access Medical, International Association of Businesses, New Benefits, Inc. and People's Benefit Services.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Peter Graham]
Last Friday, small cap stocks National Health Partners, Inc (OTCMKTS: NHPR) surged 816.7% while Timios National Corp (OTCMKTS: HOMS) and Medical Care Technologies Inc (OTCMKTS: MDCE) sank 32.28% and 25%, respectively. So what will these three small caps do for investors and traders this week? Here is a closer look to help you decide on a trading strategy:National Health Partners, Inc (OTCMKTS: NHPR) Surged 816.7% On Friday
Small cap National Health Partners is a national healthcare savings organization that provides discount healthcare membership programs to uninsured and underinsured people through a national healthcare savings network called "CARExpress." On Friday, National Health Partners surged 816.7% to $0.044 for a market cap of $107,933 plus NHPR is down 78% over the past year and up 923.3% since June 2012 according to Google Finance.
Top Insurance Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Muenchener Rueckversicherungs Gesellschaft AG in Muenchen (MUV2)Muenchener Rueckversicherungs Gesellschaft AG in Muenchen is a Germany-based holding company engaged in reinsurance and insurance business fields. The Company diversifies its operations into reinsurance, primary insurance, Munich Health and Asset management. The Reinsurance business comprises five divisions: Life; Europe and Latin America; Germany, Asia Pacific and Africa; Special and Financial Risks, and Global Clients and North America. The business covers a range of products from traditional reinsurance products to solutions for risk assumption. The Company's primary insurance activities are combined into the ERGO Insurance Group (ERGO) and offers direct insurance, life, property-casualty, health, legal expenses and travel insurance products. It covers the Company's international health reinsurance business and health primary insurance outside Germany and engages the risk management services. The Asset management business handles the investment activities of Munich Re and ERGO. Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Jonathan Morgan]
Munich Re (MUV2), the world�� biggest reinsurer, dropped 4.9 percent to 145.25 euros after it said second-quarter profit fell 35 percent, missing analysts��estimates, as claims arising from natural disasters rose. Net income dropped to 529 million euros from 808 million euros a year earlier, trailing the 557.1 million-euro average estimate of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
Top Insurance Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Euler Hermes SA (ELE)Euler Hermes SA is a France-based credit insurance company. It offers a range of services, including loan assurance, risk assessment, trade debt collection, compensation of losses due to buyer insolvency, bonding and guarantees for companies, reinsurance of loans to individuals and fidelity insurance covering companies against financial loss caused by fraudulent acts. It operates a number of subsidiaries, including Euler Hermes SFAC, Euler Hermes ACI Holding Inc., Euler Hermes Reinsurance AG, among others. On January 1, 2012, the Company completed the simplification of its legal structure in Europe by grouping 13 of its former subsidiaries into one insurance company, Euler Hermes Europe, located in Brussels. Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Sarah Jones]
Iberdrola SA (IBE), Spain�� biggest power company, fell 3.4 percent to 3.87 euros. Endesa SA (ELE) slumped 4.6 percent to 16 euros, while Acciona SA (ANA), which owns more than 4 gigawatts of wind farms in the country, tumbled 8.5 percent to 37.95 euros. Red Electrica Corp. slid 7.5 percent to 38.34 euros.
Top Insurance Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Helvetia Holding AG (HELN)Helvetia Holding AG is a Switzerland-based holding company of the Helvetia Group, an internationally active, all-lines insurance service group. The Company divides its activities into country markets Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Spain and Other insurance units, which include Austria, France and the global reinsurance business, as well as the Corporate segment, which includes all the Helvetia Group activities, as well as financing companies and the Company. Helvetia Holding AG classifies its activities as life business, non-life business and other activities. The life business offers life insurance, pension plans and annuities, among others. The non-life business includes property, motor vehicle, liability and transport policies, as well as health and accidental insurance coverage. The reinsurance business, among others, is included in Other activities business. The Company operates through its branch offices and subsidiaries. Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Tom Stoukas]
Helvetia Holding AG (HELN) added 3.3 percent to 412 Swiss francs. Switzerland�� fourth-biggest insurer said first-half profit rose because of increased life-insurance sales and an acquisition in France. Net income climbed to 179.5 million Swiss francs ($192 million) in the six months through June, beating the average analyst estimate of 164.4 million francs.
Top Insurance Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Prudential Financial Inc.(PRU)
Prudential Financial, Inc., through its subsidiaries, offers various financial products and services in the United States, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. The company operates through three divisions: The U.S. Retirement Solutions and Investment Management, The U.S. Individual Life and Group Insurance, and The International Insurance and Investments. The U.S. Retirement Solutions and Investment Management division provides individual variable and fixed annuity products, as well as offers retirement investment and income products and services to retirement plan sponsors in the public, private, and not-for-profit sectors. This division also provides investment management and advisory services to the public and private marketplace. The U.S. Individual Life and Group Insurance division offers individual variable life, term life, and universal life insurance products; and group life, long-term and short-term group disability, long-term care, and group corporate-, bank-and trus t-owned life insurance products to institutional clients. This division also sells accidental death and dismemberment, and other ancillary coverages, as well as provides plan administrative services; and offers preferred provider and indemnity dental coverage plans to clients. The International Insurance and Investments division provides international individual life insurance products in Japan, Korea, and other foreign countries; and offers proprietary and non-proprietary asset management, investment advice, and services to retail and institutional clients internationally. In addition, the company engages in real estate brokerage franchise business, which involves marketing its franchises to the real estate companies. Further, it provides institutional clients and government agencies with various services in connection with the relocation of their employees. Prudential Financial, Inc. was founded in 1875 and is headquartered in Newark, New Jersey.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Dan Caplinger]
Beyond mortgage insurance, not everything has gone well at Genworth. Its long-term care insurance business continues to struggle, with operating profits having fallen by more than 40% as Genworth struggles to get regulators to allow it to increase rates enough to make the business economically viable. Major competitors MetLife (NYSE: MET ) and Prudential (NYSE: PRU ) have already pulled back from long-term care, and Genworth might have to follow suit if it can't find other ways to make money from the segment. In addition, Genworth joined other insurers in settling claims that it and others failed to pay policy benefits to life-insurance customers, serving as a reminder that litigation risks continue to exist throughout the financial industry.
Top Insurance Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Allstate Corp (ALL)
The Allstate Corporation (Allstate), November 5, 1992, is a holding company for Allstate Insurance Company. The Company�� business is conducted principally through Allstate Insurance Company, Allstate Life Insurance Company and their affiliates. It is engaged, principally in the United States, in the property-liability insurance, life insurance, retirement and investment product business. Allstate's primary business is the sale of private passenger auto and homeowners insurance. The Company also sells several other personal property and casualty insurance products, select commercial property and casualty coverages, life insurance, annuities, voluntary accident and health insurance and funding agreements. Allstate primarily distributes its products through exclusive agencies, financial specialists, independent agencies, call centers and the Internet. It conducts its business primarily in the United States. Allstate has four business segments: Allstate Protection, Allstate Financial, Discontinued Lines and Coverages and Corporate and Other. The Company is a personal lines insurer in the United States. Customers can access Allstate products and services, such as auto insurance and homeowners insurance through nearly 12,000 exclusive Allstate agencies and financial representatives in the United States and Canada. In October 2011, the Company acquired Esurance and Answer Financial from White Mountains Insurance Group.
ALLSTATE PROTECTION SEGMENT
In this segment, the Company principally sells private passenger auto and homeowners insurance through agencies and directly through call centers and the Internet. These products are marketed under the Allstate, Encompass and Esurance brand names. The Allstate Protection segment also includes a separate organization called Emerging Businesses, which comprises Business Insurance (commercial products for small business owners), Consumer Household (specialty products including motorcycle, boat, renters and condominium insurance policies), A! llstate Dealer Services (insurance and non-insurance products sold primarily to auto dealers), Allstate Roadside Services (retail and wholesale roadside assistance products) and Ivantage (insurance agency). The Company also participates in the involuntary or shared private passenger auto insurance business in order to maintain its licenses to do business in many states. In some states, Allstate exclusive agencies offer non-proprietary property insurance products. Allstate brand auto and homeowners insurance products are sold primarily through Allstate exclusive agencies and serve customers who prefer local personal advice and service and are brand-sensitive. In most states, customers can also purchase certain Allstate brand personal insurance products, and obtain service, directly through call centers and the Internet.
During the year ended December 31, 2011, total Allstate Protection premiums written were $25.98 billion. Its broad-based network of approximately 10,000 Allstate exclusive agencies in approximately 9,700 locations in the United States produced approximately 86% of the Allstate Protection segment's written premiums in 2011. It provides personal property and casualty insurance products through independent agencies in the United States. Additionally, Allstate distribution, through brokering arrangements, offers non-proprietary products to consumers when an Allstate product is not available.
ALLSTATE FINANCIAL SEGMENT
Allstate Financial segment provides life insurance, retirement and investment products, and voluntary accident and health insurance products. Its principal products are interest-sensitive, traditional and variable life insurance; fixed annuities, including deferred and immediate; and voluntary accident and health insurance. Its institutional products consist of funding agreements sold to unaffiliated trusts that use them to back medium-term notes issued to institutional and individual investors. Banking products and services were offered to! customer! s through the Allstate Bank through September 2011. In 2011, after receiving regulatory approval to voluntarily dissolve, Allstate Bank ceased operations.
The Company sells Allstate Financial products to individuals through multiple intermediary distribution channels, including Allstate exclusive agencies and exclusive financial specialists, independent agents, specialized structured settlement brokers and directly through call centers and the Internet. The Company sells products through independent agents affiliated with approximately 125 master brokerage agencies. Independent workplace enrolling agents and Allstate exclusive agencies also sell its voluntary accident and health insurance products primarily to employees of unaffiliated businesses. Its mortgage loan portfolio, which is primarily held in the Allstate Financial portfolio, totaled $7.14 billion as of December 31, 2011
Allstate Financial, through several companies, is authorized to sell life insurance and retirement products in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States, Virgin Islands and Guam. Allstate Financial distributes its products to individuals through multiple distribution channels, including Allstate exclusive agencies and exclusive financial specialists, independent agents (including master brokerage agencies and workplace enrolling agents), specialized structured settlement brokers and directly through call centers and the Internet.
OTHER BUSINESS SEGMENTS
The Company�� Corporate and Other segment consistsof holding company activities and certain non-insurance operations. It�� Discontinued Lines and Coverages segment includes results from insurance coverage that it no longer writes and results for certain commercial and other businesses in run-off. Its exposure to asbestos, environmental and other discontinued lines claims is presented in the segment. The segment also includes the historical results of the commercial and reinsurance businesses ! sold in 1! 996.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Wallace Witkowski]
Insurers such as Aflac Inc. (AFL) ,�Allstate Corp. (ALL) , Aetna Inc. (AET) , Cigna Corp. (CI) �and Prudential Financial Inc. (PRU) �will also report, along with exchange operators Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. (NDAQ) �and CME Group Inc. (CME) .�
- [By Jessica Alling]
Though it technically didn't lose at all last week, Allstate's (NYSE: ALL ) 0.16% gain last week put it in the laggard's spot versus competitors. Set to release its first-quarter earnings after the bell on Wednesday, three pieces of news from Allstate may have caused the lower gains:
- [By Jessica Alling]
Insurance operating income jumped 28% compared to 2012, while investment income was relatively flat. The company has been working on both its underwriting practices and risk selection. And though the flat nature of its investment income may seem disappointing, all of the players in the insurance market have been dealing with pressure from the low interest rates. So the investment income generated by AIG is sign of strength in a difficult environment, with both positive returns from higher securities values and alternative investments. Competitor Allstate (NYSE: ALL ) noted in its earnings report Wednesday that it was moving into more cash-generating investments that would ultimately lead to lower investment income in the future. AIG hasn't made the same move, and may end up benefiting from the decision to hold firm.
- [By Jared Cummans]
Allstate (ALL) received welcome news today as a Los Angeles County Superior Court ruled in the insurance company’s favor in a fraud case.
The ruling favored Allstate as it battled the fraudulent billing processes and behaviors by those unlicensed in the medical field. Specifically, the suit targeted a chiropractic firm that submitted nearly 400 claims that were falsely generated and did not meet the actual needs of the patients.
The judge ruled that the firm will pay $3.8 million in assessments and $3.9 million in penalties to Allstate, making for a grand total of $7.7 million. Allstate noted that it is dedicated to fighting fraud around the country as well as protecting its customers and its customers’ money.
Allstate shares were down 26 cents, or 0.5%, at Thursday’s close. The stock is up more than 27% this year.
Top Insurance Stocks To Invest In Right Now: Sun Life Financial Inc.(SLF)
Sun Life Financial Inc., together with its subsidiaries, provides various life and health insurance, savings, investment management, retirement, and pension products and services to individuals and corporate customers. It offers individual life insurance policies, including individual term life, universal life, critical illness, disability, accident, and accidental death and dismemberment insurance policies; and group life insurance policies. The company also provides individual health insurance, long-term care insurance, group health benefits, dental benefits, and group insurance; and various individual and group annuity, retirement, and investment income products and services, such as mutual and pooled funds, variable and fixed annuities, savings, retirement and pension plans, and education savings. In addition, it offers asset management services for corporate retirement plans, separate accounts, public or government funds, and insurance company assets to institutional clients; and advisory services to individual investors. Further, the company provides run-off reinsurance services. Sun Life Financial Inc. distributes its products through direct sales agents, independent and managing general agents, financial intermediaries, broker-dealers, banks, pension and benefit consultants, and other third-party marketing organizations. The company operates primarily in Bermuda, Canada, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, the Philippines, the United States, and the United Kingdom. Sun Life Financial Inc. was founded in 1999 and is based in Toronto, Canada.Advisors' Opinion:
- [By Tim Brugger]
Initially, the deal Sun Life Financial (NYSE: SLF ) struck in December to sell its U.S. annuity portfolio and some life insurance products for $1.35 billion to Delaware Life Holdings, a Guggenheim Partners-owned company, was scheduled to be completed by Q2 of 2013.