Up 23% in the past year. Is it too late to buy this ASX 200 insurance share?

Woman using laptop for job searchWoman using laptop for job search

The share price of S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) giant QBE Insurance Group Ltd (ASX: QBE) leapt to long-forgotten heights on Monday. The stock peaked at a near-decade high of $15.64 earlier today.

Unfortunately, the QBE share price has since slumped to trade at $15.31 this afternoon. That’s 0.26% lower than its previous close.

So, what might the future hold for the ASX 200 insurance share? Let’s take a look.

Is this ASX 200 insurance share still in the buy zone?

The QBE share price has been on a roll lately, with the most recent news from the company being its financial year 2022 earnings, released in February.

The insurance provider posted a combined operating ratio (COR) of 93.7% – an improvement on the prior year’s 95% COR. Meanwhile, it posted a 13% growth in gross written premium (GWP).

Looking forward, the company expects further improvement, with its financial year 2023 Plan Group COR guidance sitting at around 93.5% and its GWP growth tipped to be in the mid-to-high single digits.

Not to mention, its investment portfolio has seen improvements on the back of interest rate hikes, while its premiums have largely been lifted in line with inflation.

All that means the company could have the potential to thrive in the current environment.

And the ASX 200 insurance provider isn’t the only one that’s hopeful of its future – many experts are bullish on its shares.

What do experts say?

Brokers and experts broadly appear hopeful for the QBE share price.

UBS, Goldman Sachs, and Morgans all have buy ratings on the stock, with respective price targets of $18, $17.45, and $16.98. That represents between 11% and 18% of potential upside.

Morgans thinks the share is cheap right now. It also expects benefits from rate hikes are yet to be felt in the ASX 200 company’s insurance book, my Fool colleague James Mickleboro reports.

UBS, meanwhile, expects strong premium prices to bolster the QBE’s bottom line.

Speaking of, Goldman Sachs notes the company’s well-capitalised balance sheet could bode well in the current uncertain economic environment.

Finally, Airlie senior investment analyst Joe Wright is also bullish, as The Motley Fool Australia’s Tony Yoo reports. Wright recently wrote for the fund manager’s blog:

We continue to believe QBE is underearning as margins for both the North American business unit, and more recently the Lloyd’s syndicates, have dragged on group performance.

QBE share price snapshot

The QBE share price has been on a roll lately – the ASX 200 insurance stock has soared 23% over the last 12 months. It’s also gained 17% since the start of 2023.

Meanwhile, the ASX 200 has risen 5% year to date and 2% since this time last year.

The post Up 23% in the past year. Is it too late to buy this ASX 200 insurance share? appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

FREE Guide for New Investors

Despite what some people may say – we believe investing in shares doesn’t have to be overwhelming or complicated…

For over a decade, we’ve been helping everyday Aussies get started on their journey.

And to help even more people cut through some of the confusion “experts’” seem to want to perpetuate – we’ve created a brand-new “how to” guide.

Yes, Claim my FREE copy!
*Returns as of April 3 2023

(function() {
function setButtonColorDefaults(param, property, defaultValue) {
if( !param || !param.includes(‘#’)) {
var button = document.getElementsByClassName(“pitch-snippet”)[0].getElementsByClassName(“pitch-button”)[0];
button.style[property] = defaultValue;

setButtonColorDefaults(“#0095C8”, ‘background’, ‘#5FA85D’);
setButtonColorDefaults(“#0095C8”, ‘border-color’, ‘#43A24A’);
setButtonColorDefaults(“#fff”, ‘color’, ‘#fff’);

More reading

Motley Fool contributor Brooke Cooper has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has positions in and has recommended Goldman Sachs Group. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

from The Motley Fool Australia https://ift.tt/mqZNuik

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s