UnipolSai, Unipol GF Fall on Disappointing Earnings Targets

Italian Insurer UnipolSai SpA and its parent company, Unipol Gruppo Finanziario SpA, fell in Milan trading after their profit targets fell short of expectations.

UnipolSai dropped by as much as 4.5 percent and was down 3.9 percent to 1.81 euros as of 10:45 a.m. in Milan trading, giving the insurer a market value of 5.1 billion euros ($5.8 billion). Unipol Gruppo declined 5.3 percent to 3.17 euros, making it the worst performer on the benchmark FTSE MIB Index.

UnipolSai forecast total profit of 1.4 billion euros to 1.6 billion euros in the three years through 2018, distributing 1 billion euros in dividends over the period, the Bologna, Italy-based company said in a statement Friday. The insurer estimates a consolidated solvency II ratio of 150 percent to 200 percent by 2018.

“The targets released this morning are below our expectations for the next 3 years,” Michele Ballatore and Ralph Hebgen, two analysts at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods wrote in a note Friday. Both consolidated profit and dividends for the next three years missed estimates, they said.

Carlo Cimbri, chief executive officer for both companies, is seeking to improve the insurer’s profitability by diversifying its product range and simplifying distribution. The insurer plans to focus on the non-life business to consolidate leadership on the domestic market.

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