On Dec 31, 2013, shares of
Arch Capital Group Ltd.
) hit a new 52-week high of $59.78.
The momentum was driven by continued solid performace at the
With respect to earnings trend, Arch Capital delivered positive
earnings surprises in the past 4 quarters, with an average beat
of 32.8%. In the last reported quarter, earnings of $1.10 per
share surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 27.9% and the
year-ago quarter number by 26.4%.
Underwriting income rose 31.8% from the prior-year quarter with
combined ratio improving 570 basis points year over year. The
quarter also experienced rate increases.
Meanwhile, Arch Capital bought back $1.3 million shares in the
third quarter taking the tally to $57.8 million worth shares
repurchased in the first nine months of 2013. It was left with
$712 million under its authorization.
Arch Capital's debt-to-capital ratio at quarter-end also remained
low at 6.8%.
The Zacks Consensus estimate also witnessed an upside with
estimates for 2013 increasing 3.8% to $4.13 over the last 60
days, translating into a year-over-year increase of 62.4%. The
same for 2014 rose 3.9% to $3.49 over the same time frame.
The Zacks Consensus estimate for the fouth quarter is currently
pegged at 89 cents, representing a potential 595% year-over-year
improvement. The expected long-term growth rate for the stock is
However, valuation for Arch Capital looks stretched. The shares
are trading at a 3.0% discount to the peer group average on a
forward price-to-earnings basis and at a 15.9% premium on a
price-to-book basis. Return on equity, on the other hand, is 7%
lower than the peer group average. The year-to-date return from
the stock of 37.6% is also lower than the Nasdaq return of 41.1%.
Arch Capital presently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some
better-ranked stocks worth considering in the property and
casualty sector include
Allied World Assurance Company Holdings, AG
AmTrust Financial Services, Inc
Aspen Insurance Holdings Ltd
). All these stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
ARCH CAP GP LTD (ACGL): Free Stock Analysis
AMTRUST FIN SVC (AFSI): Free Stock Analysis
ASPEN INS HLDGS (AHL): Free Stock Analysis
ALLIED WORLD AS (AWH): Free Stock Analysis
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