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Investment Q&A

Not investment advice or solicitation to buy/sell securities. Do your own due diligence and/or consult an advisor.

Q: Hello: I want to add an insurer stock in Canada and the USA. I admire and follow FAST Graphs. The following companies were recently reviewed: Aflac (AFL), MetLife (MET), Principal Financial Group (PFG), Prudential Financial (PRU), Great-West Life (GWO) iA Financial (IAG), ManuLife Financial (MFC), Power Corporation of Canada (POW), Sun Life Financial (SLF).

I would like your recommendations for the best choice in each country: Objective: solid, safe, long-term hold with capital appreciation potential and good consistent dividend income and dividend growth. Thank you.

Read Answer Asked by Mary on January 13, 2022

Q: In the 5i blog of Feb.9 detailing quality stocks the lifecos are listed. It seems to me that IAG stands out as having better past growth & fwd p/e numbers than SLF with way less debt. Has 5i changed its tepid opinion on IAG, particularly considering the stock price is still well off its 2020 peak compared to SLF's though IAG has been on a bit of a tear lately?

Read Answer Asked by Jeff on February 16, 2021

Q: IAG reported a 7.8% increase in their dividend, EPS up by 14% overall, results seem quite respectable yet share price is down over 3%. The executive commented .

"Overall, business growth was very good in the fourth quarter. Sales were especially robust for segregated funds and in Group Savings and Retirement," Mr. Ricard continued. "Individual Insurance sales also finished strong with 8% year‑over‑year growth, and mutual fund sales improved. Solid profits and sales in both of our U.S. divisions in 2019 reinforce our desire to continue growing our U.S. presence in 2020, in particular with the acquisition of IAS announced in December 2019."

"Profitability remained strong in the fourth quarter," added Jacques Potvin, Executive Vice‑President, CFO and Chief Actuary. "Market growth and new business strain are among the items that had a positive impact on profitability during the quarter. Our year-end assumption review also had a slightly positive impact on our results. The review factored in investments in technology to improve client and distributor experience."

"Our guidance for 2020 puts core EPS between $6.30 and $6.90. That makes the midpoint 11% higher than last year," continued Mr. Potvin. "After exceeding guidance in 2019, we're also raising our target range for ROE to between 11.5% and 13%. Organic growth and various profit improvement initiatives will help us reach these targets. On another note, we achieved our goal of organically generating over $250 million in capital in 2019. Renewing that goal in 2020 will allow us to maintain our strong capital position."

Can you comment? Thank you

Read Answer Asked by Martin on February 13, 2020

Q: Greetings 5i team, Valuation measures look fine for IAG. How does IAG compare to other Ins. Co's and financial svc Co's for earnings growth and i-rate environment moving higher ?

Read Answer Asked by Bernie on November 07, 2018

Q: I now have roughly equal positions in IAG, SLF and MFC, with the total somewhere between 8 and 9 % of portfolio. I bought these primarily for the dividends. However, MFC has lost value relative to SLF - and IAG has lost even more. Why are MFC and IAG underperforming SLF to such a degree? Thanks.

Read Answer Asked by Gordon on August 02, 2018

Q: Over the past few years, we regularly heard that insurance companies' share prices could not perform well in a "low-rate" environment, or more particularly in an environment where the difference between long-term and short-term government bond rates is small. However, over the past year, rates have markedly increased, and the difference between the 10yr and 1mo rates is now at or near a multi-year high.
Quite logically, I expected my Canadian insurance holdings to show a significant increase in share price. However, this did not happen (or, at best, only very weakly). Why?
Thanks!

Read Answer Asked by Gregory on February 28, 2018

Q: IAG stock has recently taken more of a hit than I believe can be explained by interest rate sensitivity alone. There was news last week of a potential liability for IAG and MFC re predecessor companies and investments in "side accounts". Why then has IAG stock been hit so much harder than MFC? I hold SLF as well and it remains solid. Unfortunately I hold IAG, MFC and SLF in a ratio of 2:2:1 with the total of all three making up about 7% of total investment portfolio. Would you recommend any adjustments here?

Read Answer Asked by Gordon on February 27, 2018

Q: Admittedly the BoC only raised rates yesterday, but aren't lifecos supposed to do well in rising rates environments? Anyway, where do you this sector going over the next 12 months? Thank you.

Read Answer Asked by Kurt W on September 08, 2017