What are Insurance Stocks?
Most insurance stocks have been some of the biggest winning stocks on Wall Street throughout history. These stocks will generally collect premiums for years and have to only payout claims in rare instances. Some of the times that insurance companies will face a potential loss will come at the hands of a natural disaster.
In 2004, many of the leading insurance companies faced major hardship and a decline in stock prices after a massive earthquake, and tsunami, took place in the Indian ocean. In 2011, Japan experienced a massive earthquake and tsunami, this occurrence once again caused a short term decline in many of the major insurance companies.
Even when a major insurance company faces a major hardship from a natural disaster or a poor financial decision, the insurance company will often survive. In 2008, American International Group Inc.(NYSE:AIG) was bailed out by the United States government after the company failed to make good on it's insurance obligations. Rarely, will governments allow multi-billion dollar institutions to fail. The U.S. government cited national and global systemic risk as the reason for the bailout of the insurance giant.
Insurance companies have many different segments of business. The most common is the property and casualty segment. This ranges from workers compensation, automobile, property, livestock, marine, liability, and umbrella coverages. Other segments include various health insurance options as well as life insurance, and disability coverage for individuals and groups and more.
• American International Group (NYSE:AIG)
• AFLAC Inc. (NYSE:AFL)
• Progressive Corp. (NYSE:PGR)
• The Allstate Corporation (NYSE:ALL)
• Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. (HIG)
• AXA (ADR) (AXAHY.PK)
• Prudential Financial Inc. (NYSE:PRU)
• MetLife, Inc.(NYSE:MET)
• ING Groep N.V. (ADR) (NYSE:ING)
• China Life Insurance Company Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LFC)
• Sun Life Financial Inc. (NYSE:SLF)
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