Zacks Investment Research Upgrades CNO Financial Group, Inc. (CNO) to “Hold”

CNO Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:CNO) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday.

According to Zacks, “CNO Financial’s investment in technological innovations in terms of product line upgrades has helped the company to build a strong position in the market. In addition, the company is strategizing for the reduction of long-term care exposure via run-off of existing non-performing businesses, reinsurance and increasing focus on growth of other potential business lines. Strongcapital management supported long term growth as well.The stock gained 9% compared with 6% gain by the Zacks categorized Multi-line insurance industry, year to date. However, the company’s low market share in some product lines poses the risk of limiting business opportunities going forward. Also, suspension of its share buyback plan for this year might have affected bottom line. The company’s margin is heavily affected by its high level of debt that increased financial risk as well as borrowing cost. Moreover, pricing challenges in the long-term care bothers.”

Several other brokerages also recently issued reports on CNO. ValuEngine upgraded shares of CNO Financial Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, June 27th. Wells Fargo & Company reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of CNO Financial Group in a report on Monday, June 5th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods set a $22.00 price target on shares of CNO Financial Group and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, March 17th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of CNO Financial Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, June 16th. Finally, FBR & Co reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $23.00 price target on shares of CNO Financial Group in a report on Wednesday, May 31st. Eight analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. CNO Financial Group has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $19.86.

CNO Financial Group (CNO) opened at 21.15 on Wednesday. CNO Financial Group has a 12 month low of $14.30 and a 12 month high of $22.60. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $20.49 and a 200-day moving average price of $20.24. The company has a market capitalization of $3.62 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 9.93 and a beta of 1.20.

CNO Financial Group (NYSE:CNO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 26th. The financial services provider reported $0.34 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.31 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $1.07 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.01 billion. CNO Financial Group had a net margin of 9.16% and a return on equity of 5.51%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 11.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the business earned $0.26 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts anticipate that CNO Financial Group will post $1.50 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, June 23rd. Investors of record on Friday, June 9th were paid a $0.09 dividend. This is a boost from CNO Financial Group’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.08. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, June 7th. This represents a $0.36 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.70%. CNO Financial Group’s payout ratio is currently 16.82%.

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Several hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. boosted its stake in shares of CNO Financial Group by 128.2% in the fourth quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 7,265 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $131,000 after buying an additional 4,081 shares in the last quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of CNO Financial Group by 1,250.7% in the first quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 9,036 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $185,000 after buying an additional 8,367 shares in the last quarter. Teza Capital Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of CNO Financial Group during the first quarter valued at $219,000. Laurion Capital Management LP acquired a new stake in shares of CNO Financial Group during the first quarter valued at $242,000. Finally, New York State Teachers Retirement System boosted its stake in shares of CNO Financial Group by 197.6% in the first quarter. New York State Teachers Retirement System now owns 12,200 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $250,000 after buying an additional 8,100 shares in the last quarter. 94.08% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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.

Analyst Recommendations for CNO Financial Group (NYSE:CNO)

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