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CNO (CNO) Up 2.8% Since Last Earnings Report: Can It Continue?

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It has been about a month since the last earnings report for CNO Financial (CNO - Free Report) . Shares have added about 2.8% in that time frame, outperforming the S&P 500.

Will the recent positive trend continue leading up to its next earnings release, or is CNO due for a pullback? Before we dive into how investors and analysts have reacted as of late, let's take a quick look at the most recent earnings report in order to get a better handle on the important catalysts.

CNO Financial Beats Q2 Earnings on Lower Costs

CNO Financial’s Earnings outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate and were aided by a strong variable investment income, stable underlying insurance product margins, and a decline in benefits and expenses. The quarter also witnessed steep growth in new money rates and improved earned yields, which in turn, benefited the net investment income of CNO. However, lower insurance policy income hampered the top line of the insurer in the quarter under review.

Q2 Update

CNO Financial reported second-quarter 2022 adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of 85 cents, which outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a whopping 80.9%. The bottom line climbed 29% year over year.

Total revenues amounted to $855 million, which dropped 20.3% year over year. The top line lagged the consensus mark by 4.9%.

Total insurance policy income of $625.6 million dipped 1% year over year in the second quarter.

Net investment income improved 8% year over year to $291.1 million.

Annuity collected premiums of $435 million climbed 26% year over year in the quarter under review.

New annualized premiums for health and life products dropped 5% year over year to $88.8 million.

Total benefits and expenses of $679.6 million decreased 30% year over year, attributable to reduced insurance policy benefits and other operating costs and expenses.

Financial Update (as of Jun 30, 2022)

CNO Financial exited the second quarter with unrestricted cash and cash equivalents of $567.2 million, which tumbled 13.1% year over year.

Total assets of $33.8 billion fell 4.7% year over year.

Total shareholders’ equity plunged 58.5% year over year to $2,212 million.

Book value per share came in at $19.27, which slumped 53.3% year over year.

Operating return on equity improved 120 basis points (bps) year over year to 10.3%.

Debt-to-capital ratio of 34% deteriorated 1,640 bps year over year at the second-quarter end.

Share Repurchase and Dividend Update

CNO Financial rewarded $76.5 million to its shareholders through share buybacks of $60 million and dividends worth $16.5 million.

2022 Outlook

Management forecasts growth in sales this year.

Investment income, allocated to products, is anticipated to stay relatively flat to modestly up, while the earlier view for the metric was to be relatively flat. Investment income, not allocated to products, is likely to remain lower than the 2021 figure.

Fee income is predicted to witness an uptrend in 2022 from the 2021 level, with the metric remaining seasonally softer in the third quarter of 2022 (on a sequential basis) and gradually picking up in the fourth quarter.

Expenses (excluding significant items) are estimated to be decently higher than the 2021 figure.

Free cash flow is expected to be lower than the 2021 level.

How Have Estimates Been Moving Since Then?

In the past month, investors have witnessed a downward trend in fresh estimates.

VGM Scores

Currently, CNO has a poor Growth Score of F, however its Momentum Score is doing a lot better with a B. Charting a somewhat similar path, the stock was allocated a grade of A on the value side, putting it in the top quintile for this investment strategy.

Overall, the stock has an aggregate VGM Score of B. If you aren't focused on one strategy, this score is the one you should be interested in.

Outlook

Estimates have been broadly trending downward for the stock, and the magnitude of these revisions indicates a downward shift. Notably, CNO has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). We expect an in-line return from the stock in the next few months.

Performance of an Industry Player

CNO belongs to the Zacks Insurance - Multi line industry. Another stock from the same industry, The Hartford (HIG - Free Report) , has gained 3.3% over the past month. More than a month has passed since the company reported results for the quarter ended June 2022.

The Hartford reported revenues of $3.77 billion in the last reported quarter, representing a year-over-year change of +5.5%. EPS of $2.15 for the same period compares with $2.33 a year ago.

For the current quarter, The Hartford is expected to post earnings of $1.49 per share, indicating a change of +18.3% from the year-ago quarter. The Zacks Consensus Estimate has changed -4.8% over the last 30 days.

The Hartford has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) based on the overall direction and magnitude of estimate revisions. Additionally, the stock has a VGM Score of B.


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