For Stormy Days: IPC

This is the kind of stock true-blue value investors love, says one pro. Also featured: Sprint and Compugen

Tired of the turbulent market? Then you might look at IPC Holdings (IPCR ): The stock of this property-catastrophe reinsurer has held up nicely through the storm. It rebounded from 18 in mid-April to 23 on Aug. 29. "This is the kind of stock true-blue value investors love," says Scott Black, president of Delphi Management, which steers some $1.5 billion. IPC is a Warren Buffett type of stock, notes Black: It trades at book value, its price-earnings ratio is a depressed 7, and it beat the Street's second-quarter estimates with earnings of 77 cents a share--better than the consensus 64 cents. And with its outlook looking rosier--despite having to make provision for destructive weather, such as Hurricane Allison--IPC has decided to pay a quarterly dividend of 16 cents a share, or a 2.8% yield, starting in September. While second-quarter calamities dampened results at primary insurance carriers, IPC was unscathed, notes Jay Cohen of Merrill Lynch, because of its tightened underwriting discipline.

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