Back to top

Analyst Blog

The board of directors of Symetra Financial Corporation (SYA - Snapshot Report) recently approved an 11% increase in its quarterly cash dividend. The life insurer will now pay a quarterly dividend of 10 cents per share, up from 9 cents per share distributed previously. The first increased quarterly dividend will be paid on or about Mar 28, 2014 to shareholders of record as on Mar 18.

The increased quarterly dividend is equivalent to an annual dividend of 40 cents per share. Based on yesterday’s closing share price of $20.27, the increased dividend implies a yield of 1.97% for Symetra Financial, which is greater than the industry yield of 1.54%.

The dividend hike is primarily supported by the company’s sturdy financial position cushioned by strong retained earnings. Symetra Financial exited 2013 with retained earnings of $975.9 million, up from $798.4 million reported as of 2012-end. Moreover, substantial improvements across Benefits and Individual Life results are driving bottom-line growth at the company which in turn aids the dividend payout.

Based on around 126.6 million shares outstanding, Symetra Financial will have to dish out roughly $12.7 million as quarterly dividend.

Symetra Financial has been consistently distributing profit to its shareholders for the last few years. With the latest dividend increase, the quarterly cash dividend of the company has doubled in about three years’ time.

Among other insurers, the board of directors of FBL Financial Group Inc. (FFG - Snapshot Report) recently approved a whopping 133% increase in its quarterly cash dividend. The multi line insurer will now pay a dividend of 35 cents per share, up from 15 cents distributed earlier.

The board of another insurer, AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. (AFSI - Snapshot Report) raised its regular quarterly dividend by 43% on Feb 18, 2014. The company will now pay a quarterly dividend of 20 cents per share, up from 14 cents a share paid previously.

The board of directors at XL Group plc (XL - Analyst Report) recently sanctioned a 14.3% hike in its quarterly dividend. The company will now pay a dividend of 16 cents per share, up from 14 cents paid on Dec 31, 2013.

Symetra Financial presently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Please login to Zacks.com or register to post a comment.

New to Zacks?

Start Here

Zacks Investment Research

Close

Are you a new Zacks Member or a visitor to Zacks.com?

Top Zacks Features

My Portfolio Tracker

Is it Time to Sell?

One of the most important steps you can take today is to set up your portfolio tracker on Zacks.com. Once you do, you'll be notified of major events affecting your stocks and/or funds with daily email alerts.

More Zacks Resources

Zacks Rank Home - Evaluate your stocks and use the Zacks Rank to eliminate the losers and keep the winners.

Mutual Fund Rank Home - Evaluate your funds with the Mutual Fund Rank for both your personal and retirement funds.

Stock/Mutual Fund Screening - Find better stocks and mutual funds. The ones most likely to beat the market and provide a positive return.

My Portfolio - Track your Portfolio and find out where your stocks/mutual funds stack up with the Zacks Rank.

Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers for Zacks #1 Rank Top Movers

Company Symbol Price %Chg
RPC INC RES 24.91 +8.35%
LITHIA MOTO… LAD 94.59 +4.60%
DELTA AIR L… DAL 39.15 +3.90%
FLAMEL TECH… FLML 14.51 +3.50%
SOUTHWEST A… LUV 28.87 +2.92%