Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Hartford Financial Reports Big Jump in Book Value

After the close, Hartford Financial (HIG) reported a big jump in book value to $37.90 when they reported Q3 earnings. This wasn't all that surprising considering the rebound in the markets, but confirmation helps pound it home to people still negative on the stock. Considering its only trading at $27 in the after hours action it appears that some people are still dense.

  • Book Value Per Share Jumps 18% From End of Second Quarter to $37.90
Also, HIG reported core earnings of $1.56 which handily beat the estimate of $1.11 and they raised 2009 estimates. They did report a net loss on charges and at that point the reporting for HIG gets very confusing and beyond the need of further research.

The key is that HIG will survive and prosper and book value is likely to soon bounce back over $40. Earnings will likely be estimated at over $4 and mabye as high as $5 next year. So either way you slice the valuation based on BV or EPS, HIG easily hits the $50+ range. Until then we'll avoid straining brain power on the earnings release and focus more on the macro view.

Hartford Financial continues to be one of the biggest positions in our Growth Portfolio and will remain that way until the stock rockets much closer to normal valuations.


Disclosure: Long HIG is client and personal accounts.

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