On Mar 07, 2014, shares of
Protective Life Corp.
) hit a 52-week high of $54.05. The momentum was driven by strong
operating performance exhibited by the company in its recently
reported fourth quarter and full year earnings results as well as
a rating affirmation by A.M. Best.
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Protective Life reported earnings of $1.43 per share handily
beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 31 cents per share. The
better-than-expected results came on the back of higher
contribution from all of the company's segments - Life Marketing,
Acquisitions, Annuities, Stable Value Products as well as Asset
Protection. The company posted positive earnings surprises in
three of the last four reported quarters with an average beat of
In 2014, we expect the company's earnings to benefit from the
recently closed acquisition of MONY Life Insurance Company. The
acquisition is expected to add 10 to 15 cents per share to
Protective Life's 2014 earnings while expanding its life
insurance portfolio and enhancing its market share.
Other efforts made by the company, which include innovative
retail growth initiatives, focus on careful and rational
allocation of capital and constant attention toward rigorous
expense management will help it emerge strongly over time.
In addition, the gradually increasing interest rate environment
also bodes well for the company's investment income which had
otherwise been underperforming.
Moreover, this life insurer with a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) boasts of
solid asset quality and overall sound capital position, liquidity
and financial flexibility alongside robust enterprise risk
management which drives credit rating agencies to assign it a
strong credit score.
Protective Life also outperformed the one-year S&P 500, which
posted a return of 21.1% against a return of 58.8% clocked by the
Other stocks such as
Lincoln National Corporation
Symetra Financial Corporation
) all carrying the same rank as Protective Life are worth