Financial Survey: Lincoln National Corporation (LNC) & MetLife (MET)

Lincoln National Corporation (NYSE: LNC) and MetLife (NYSE:MET) are both large-cap finance companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their valuation, institutional ownership, risk, dividends, earnings, profitability and analyst recommendations.

Dividends

Lincoln National Corporation pays an annual dividend of $1.16 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.6%. MetLife pays an annual dividend of $1.60 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.1%. Lincoln National Corporation pays out 18.2% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. MetLife pays out -320.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Both companies have healthy payout ratios and should be able to cover their dividend payments with earnings for the next several years. Lincoln National Corporation has raised its dividend for 4 consecutive years and MetLife has raised its dividend for 6 consecutive years. MetLife is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

81.0% of Lincoln National Corporation shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 74.0% of MetLife shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.4% of Lincoln National Corporation shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 0.3% of MetLife shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, hedge funds and large money managers believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Lincoln National Corporation and MetLife’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Lincoln National Corporation $13.33 billion 1.21 $1.19 billion $6.39 11.49
MetLife $63.48 billion 0.86 $800.00 million ($0.50) -104.00

Lincoln National Corporation has higher revenue, but lower earnings than MetLife. MetLife is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Lincoln National Corporation, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent recommendations for Lincoln National Corporation and MetLife, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Lincoln National Corporation 1 5 4 0 2.30
MetLife 1 8 7 1 2.47

Lincoln National Corporation presently has a consensus price target of $76.22, indicating a potential upside of 3.79%. MetLife has a consensus price target of $59.22, indicating a potential upside of 13.88%. Given MetLife’s stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe MetLife is more favorable than Lincoln National Corporation.

Profitability

This table compares Lincoln National Corporation and MetLife’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Lincoln National Corporation 10.50% 11.16% 0.64%
MetLife -0.75% 8.81% 0.67%

Risk and Volatility

Lincoln National Corporation has a beta of 2.03, indicating that its share price is 103% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, MetLife has a beta of 1.51, indicating that its share price is 51% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Summary

MetLife beats Lincoln National Corporation on 10 of the 18 factors compared between the two stocks.

Lincoln National Corporation Company Profile

Lincoln National Corporation is a holding company, which operates insurance and retirement businesses through subsidiary companies. The Company sells a range of wealth protection, accumulation and retirement income products and solutions, through its business segments. The Company operates through four segments: Annuities segment, which offers fixed (including indexed) and variable annuities; Retirement Plan Services segment, which provides employers with retirement plan products and services; Life Insurance segment, which focuses on the creation and protection of wealth through life insurance products, and Group Protection, which offers principally group non-medical insurance products. These products include fixed and indexed annuities, variable annuities, universal life insurance, variable universal life insurance, linked-benefit UL, term life insurance, indexed universal life insurance, employer-sponsored retirement plans and services, and group life, disability and dental.

MetLife Company Profile

MetLife, Inc. is a provider of life insurance, annuities, employee benefits and asset management. The Company’s segments include U.S.; Asia; Latin America; Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA); MetLife Holdings, and Corporate & Other. Its U.S. segment is organized into Group Benefits, Retirement and Income Solutions and Property & Casualty businesses. Its Asia segment offers products, including life insurance; accident and health insurance, and retirement and savings products. Latin America offers products, including life insurance, and retirement and savings products. Life insurance includes universal, variable and term life products. EMEA offers products, including life insurance, accident and health insurance, retirement and savings products, and credit insurance.

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