Recently, the board of
CNO Financial Group Inc.
) announced a 50% hike in its quarterly cash dividend to 3 cents
a share from 2 cents paid earlier. The increased dividend will be
paid on Jun 24, 2013 to shareholders of record as of Jun 10.
The increased dividend implies an annual yield of 1% per share
based on CNO Financial's closing share price of $11.97 as of May
8, 2013. The old dividend amounted to a yield of 0.67%.
CNO Financial will require $6.7 million every quarter to
finance the new dividend, based on the outstanding share count of
223.5 million as of Mar 31, 2013. The company has ample financial
resources for this purpose, with unrestricted cash and cash
equivalents of $251.6 million as of Mar 31, 2013.
CNO Financial's strong organic growth and excess capital
generation allowed it to follow an active capital deployment
policy. The company expects to spend $250-$300 million each on
share buybacks and dividend payouts in 2013.
The regular capital deployment and dividend hike reflect
management's confidence in the financial strength of CNO
Financial. This was reflected in the company's initiation of a
quarterly cash dividend of 2 cents per share in May 2012.
CNO Financial currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Other
stocks in the insurance sector that are worth a look are
Eastern Insurance Holdings, Inc.
). All these companies carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
AEGON N V (AEG): Free Stock Analysis Report
CIGNA CORP (CI): Free Stock Analysis Report
CNO FINL GRP (CNO): Free Stock Analysis
EASTERN INSURNC (EIHI): Free Stock Analysis
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.