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Bear of the Day: Assurant (AIZ)

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As a huge Cubs fan I’ve had baseball on the brain. Some days you’re out here cranking out home runs. Other days, you’re striking out. It looks like today’s Bear of the Day has been striking out recently. If you’re invested in the company, you may want to assess your timeframe because the short term doesn’t look so fantastic right now.

Assurant (AIZ - Free Report) through its subsidiaries, provides risk management solutions worldwide. It operates through Assurant Solutions and Assurant Specialty Property segments. The company offers mobile device protection and related services; vehicle protection; pre-funded funeral insurance; credit insurance; renters insurance; lender-placed homeowners insurance; mortgage valuation and field services; and manufactured housing insurance. It also provides title and valuation services for home equity lenders. The company was formerly known as Fortis, Inc. and changed its name to Assurant, Inc. in February 2004. Assurant, Inc. was founded in 1969 and is headquartered in New York, New York.

With Hurricane Matthew and other recent events, business has seen some challenges. Obviously as an insurance company you’d like to see things go smoothly. Assurant showed us the downside of being an insurer in their last earnings report. The company reported third-quarter 2016 net operating income of $1.00 per share that missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 12.3%. Moreover, the bottom line plunged 34.6% from $1.53 per share earned in the year-ago quarter. Higher reportable catastrophe losses, ongoing normalization of lender-placed insurance business, and declines in mobile and legacy extended service contracts and credit insurance led to the year-over-year deterioration. However, lower Corporate net operating loss partially offset the downside.

The company is a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell) right now. A big reason for the rank is five analysts have dropped their earnings estimates for the current year and next year. The bearish sentiment has forced the consensus estimate down from $5.86 to $4.44 for the current year and brought down next year’s number from $7.10 to $6.58.

Investors looking for other stocks in the same industry should check out Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stocks Ageas (AGESY - Free Report) and AXA (AXAHY - Free Report) .

More Stocks to Sell. Now.

Beyond our Bear Stock of the Day, today's list of 220 Zacks Rank #5 Strong Sells demand even more urgent attention. If any are lurking in your portfolio or Watch List, they should be removed immediately. Many appear to be sound investments but, since 1988, such stocks have actually performed more than 11X worse than the S&P 500. See today's Zacks "Strong Sells" absolutely free >>.

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Asa SA (AXAHY) - free report >>

Assurant, Inc. (AIZ) - free report >>

Ageas SA (AGESY) - free report >>

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