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UBS Warburg Reduces Target on John Hancock


John Hancock (JHF) posted $0.33 vs. $0.59 second-quarter EPS (GAAP) despite an 8.2% revenue rise. The company cut its 2002 EPS from operations growth estimate to 8%-11%. UBS Warburg cut its price target on the shares.

Analyst Joanne Smith says the company's second-quarter EPS from operations ($0.72) was in line with her estimate. She notes earnings benefited from solid fixed product sales in most segments, growth in retail fixed annuity earnings and Canadian life insurance operations, as well as other factors. However, she maintains a hold rating on the shares and cut her $40 price target to $32 on concerns that Hancock's investment portfolio can continue to impair book value growth and negatively influence future investment yields and earnings. Smith put her EPS from operations estimates of $2.90 for 2002 and $3.18 for 2003 under review.


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