CNO Financial Group (NYSE: CNO) and Symetra Financial (NYSE:SYA) are both financials companies, but which is the better investment? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their profitability, institutional ownership, analyst recommendations, risk, valuation, earnings and dividends.
CNO Financial Group pays an annual dividend of $0.36 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.4%. Symetra Financial pays an annual dividend of $0.44 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.4%. CNO Financial Group pays out 13.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Symetra Financial pays out 32.4% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Both companies have healthy payout ratios and should be able to cover their dividend payments with earnings for the next several years. CNO Financial Group has raised its dividend for 8 consecutive years and Symetra Financial has raised its dividend for 5 consecutive years. CNO Financial Group is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.
This table compares CNO Financial Group and Symetra Financial’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.
|Net Margins||Return on Equity||Return on Assets|
|CNO Financial Group||11.41%||5.88%||0.85%|
Institutional & Insider Ownership
95.1% of CNO Financial Group shares are held by institutional investors. 2.0% of CNO Financial Group shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a company is poised for long-term growth.
Valuation & Earnings
This table compares CNO Financial Group and Symetra Financial’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.
|Gross Revenue||Price/Sales Ratio||Net Income||Earnings Per Share||Price/Earnings Ratio|
|CNO Financial Group||$3.99 billion||1.07||$358.20 million||$2.77||9.14|
CNO Financial Group has higher revenue and earnings than Symetra Financial. CNO Financial Group is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Symetra Financial, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.
This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for CNO Financial Group and Symetra Financial, as provided by MarketBeat.com.
|Sell Ratings||Hold Ratings||Buy Ratings||Strong Buy Ratings||Rating Score|
|CNO Financial Group||1||6||2||0||2.11|
CNO Financial Group presently has a consensus target price of $22.00, indicating a potential downside of 13.15%. Given CNO Financial Group’s higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe CNO Financial Group is more favorable than Symetra Financial.
CNO Financial Group beats Symetra Financial on 12 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.
CNO Financial Group Company Profile
CNO Financial Group, Inc. is a holding company for a group of insurance companies operating throughout the United States that develops, markets and administers health insurance, annuity, individual life insurance and other insurance products. The Company’s segments include Bankers Life, Washington National and Colonial Penn. It sells health insurance, annuity, individual life insurance and other insurance products through three primary distribution channels: career agents, independent producers and direct marketing. The Company offers products in various categories, including health, annuities and life insurance. The health products include Medicare supplement, long-term care, prescription drug plan and Medicare advantage, supplemental health products and other health products. The annuities products include fixed index annuities and other fixed interest annuities. The life insurance products include interest-sensitive life products and traditional life products.
Symetra Financial Company Profile
Symetra Financial Corporation is a financial services company in the life insurance industry. The Company’s products are distributed domestically in all states and the District of Columbia through benefits consultants, financial institutions, broker-dealers and independent agents and advisers. It has three divisions: Benefits Division, Retirement Division and Individual Life Division. The Company’s Benefits Division provides medical stop-loss insurance, group life and disability income (DI) insurance, and limited benefit medical insurance as its principal products. The Company’s Retirement Division provides products that help its customers prepare for retirement and includes the Deferred Annuities and Income Annuities segments. The Company’s Individual Life division sells life insurance products.
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