On Aug 30, 2016, shares of Cincinnati Financial CorpCINF hit a 52-week high of $77.63, driven by strategic initiatives to expand its business and sustained favorable operating performance. About 0.4 million shares exchanged hands in the last trading session and the stock finally closed at $77.35. Year to date, the stock has returned 30.73%, comparing favorably with 4.30% by the Nasdaq.
Investors seem upbeat about Cincinnati Financial's efforts to boost operations at its Commercial Line insurance segment, which is one of its most profitable units. The company recently announced personnel changes at the unit to expand and drive greater returns from its Commercial Line business. Notably, this business generates a major portion of the company's revenues.
Cincinnati Financial also extended the availability of its Executive Capstone program for high net worth clients in California through its lead property casualty insurance subsidiary - The Cincinnati Insurance Company. The Executive Capstone program, unveiled in Sep 2015, is a new portfolio of insurance products serving the unique needs of high net worth personal insurance clients.
Continued favorable operational performance helped the insurer deliver positive surprises in each of the last four quarters, with an average beat of 24.2%. Banking on strong results, Cincinnati Financial boasts a solid track of increasing dividend annually for the past 56 years, a record matched by only eight other publicly traded companies in the U.S. This in turn makes the stock an attractive pick for yield-seeking investors.
CINCINNATI FINL Price and Consensus
Riding high on the positives, the Zacks Consensus Estimate saw an uptrend as estimates moved north over the last 60 days. The same for 2016 and 2017 were revised higher by a dime and is currently pegged at $3.10 and $2.90, respectively.
Other Stocks to Consider
Investors interested in the property and casualty industry can also look at National Interstate Corporation NATL , Allied World Assurance Company Holdings, AG AWH and NMI Holdings, Inc. NMIH . Each of these stocks sports Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.