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MetLife, Inc. (MET)

  • Dec. 18, 2014, 4:12 PM
    • Not much of a surprise, MetLife (NYSE:MET) is notified by the Financial Stability Oversight Council of its designation as a SIFI. Also no surprise, the company registers its "disappointment" over the move.
    • "As we have said many times, singling out two large life insurance companies [Prudential as well] for SIFI designation will harm competition, lead to higher prices and less choice for consumers, and ultimately could result in less financial protection for middle-class families who need it the most."
    • MetLife has thirty days to seek judicial review of the FSOC decision, and is considering its next move.
    • Source: Press Release
    • Previously: MetLife SIFI case gets stronger as it passes Goldman in assets (Dec. 18, 2014)
    | Dec. 18, 2014, 4:12 PM | 1 Comment
  • Dec. 18, 2014, 8:46 AM
    • MetLife's (NYSE:MET) balance sheet expanded this year to more than $900B in assets, passing Goldman Sachs to become the 5th-largest S&P 500 company on that metric. MetLife is also bigger than Prudential Financial and AIG - both of which have already been designated as SIFIs.
    • "There’s probably not a chance that they escape," says Macquarie's Sean Dargan. "I'm working under the assumption that Met is going to be a SIFI.”
    • Size alone doesn't necessarily make a company systemically important, says a former Treasury official, noting assets can be transferred to other firms if they can perform the same functions. Nevertheless, MetLife seems resigned to its fate, and is now getting ready to work with the Fed on designing capital rules aimed at insurance rather than banking.
    | Dec. 18, 2014, 8:46 AM | Comment!
  • Dec. 16, 2014, 12:54 PM
    • In a $440M deal, TRW purchased a group annuity contract from MetLife (MET -0.2%), with the insurer taking over pension payments to the retirees and beneficiaries covered by the agreement.
    • The buy-out with TRW is one of a number MetLife has closed of late, and Met says nearly one-third of plan sponsor are considering making similar moves over the next two years.
    • Source: Press Release
    | Dec. 16, 2014, 12:54 PM | Comment!
  • Dec. 12, 2014, 7:18 AM
    • "While our approach to capital management remains cautious in light of regulatory uncertainty," says CEO Steve Kandarian, "Our philosophy is that excess capital belongs to MetLifes shareholders."
    • MET has nearly completed the $1B buyback program launched in June, with $967.1M repurchased as of December 1.
    • Source: Press Release
    • Shares -0.2% premarket
    | Dec. 12, 2014, 7:18 AM | Comment!
  • Dec. 11, 2014, 7:31 AM
    • The Insurance Capital Standards Clarification Act of 2014 "give(s) the Federal Reserve the flexibility to tailor bank-centric capital rules for the life insurance business," says MetLife (NYSE:MET) CEO Steven Kandarian.
    • Pretty much alone among its industry, MetLife has been beating the drum that regulators would be nuts to create one size fits all capital rules for banks and insurers.
    • Source: Press Release
    | Dec. 11, 2014, 7:31 AM | Comment!
  • Dec. 10, 2014, 2:26 PM
    • Esther Lee comes over from AT&T, effective January 12, where she was SVP, brand marketing, advertising, and sponsorships. Prior to joining AT&T in 2009, Lee was CEO for the North American division of Euro RSCG, and prior to that was global chief creative officer for Coca-Cola.
    • Source: Press Release
    | Dec. 10, 2014, 2:26 PM | Comment!
  • Dec. 5, 2014, 10:06 AM
    | Dec. 5, 2014, 10:06 AM | 12 Comments
  • Nov. 19, 2014, 10:05 AM
    | Nov. 19, 2014, 10:05 AM | Comment!
  • Nov. 17, 2014, 8:57 AM
    • More than a year ago, MetLife (NYSE:MET) announced it would merge three life insurance subsidiaries with an offshore reinsurance subsidiary as part of a larger effort improve the risk profile and transparency of the variable annuity business.
    • The merged company - which includes MetLife Insurance of Connecticut, MetLife Investors USA, MetLife Investors Insurance, and Exeter Reinsurance - has been named MetLife Insurance Company U.S.A. and is domiciled in Delaware.
    • Source: Press Release
    | Nov. 17, 2014, 8:57 AM | Comment!
  • Nov. 10, 2014, 2:33 PM
    • "The failure of any institution with $1T in assets could do serious damage to the financial system," writes the FT's Lex Team. "MetLife (MET +0.1%) fully deserves its SIFI status."
    • D.C. regulators argue a run on a large insurer, say a mass cash out of life policies, would disrupt the financial system, but MetLife says a mass surrender of policies is not possible due to their nature. Further, many annuity and life policies can be cashed out only by incurring significant penalties.
    • Fair enough, writes Lex, agreeing that insurers should not be regulated like banks, but reminding this does not exempt them from closer regulatory scrutiny. "Regulators should regulate for the next crisis, not the last one."
    • Previously: MetLife to meet regulators to avoid "systemic" tag
    | Nov. 10, 2014, 2:33 PM | 3 Comments
  • Nov. 6, 2014, 3:47 PM
    • One week after MetLife (NYSE:MET) said it's wary of the largest pension deals at current prices, Prudential (NYSE:PRU) - on its earnings call today - defended its policy of going after them.
    • Prudential, says COO Stephen Pelletier, can distinguish itself through an ability to handle complex transactions and deal with thousands of retirees. Looking at Prudential's recent taking on of $3.1B in pension liabilities from Motorola, Citi's Erik Bass queried management on why Motorola isn't paying a premium when most firms pay in the area of 5-15% of the liabilities transferred.
    • Pelletier responded that plan sponsors can use different approaches to quantifying liabilities, with discrepancies sometimes arising from the use of different mortality tables. "That's all pretty much irrelevant to us ... We use a consistent and very disciplined methodology with multiple layers of oversight in order to arrive at our customized view from the ground up of the economic risks that we’re taking on in a given transaction.”
    • "We think PRU’s management addressed well and head-on the continued concerns voiced both by investors and a few competitors over the pricing and returns of its pension risk transfer business,” says Sterne Agee's John Nadel. “Although we expect doubts will likely persist.”
    • Prudential is lower by 4.5% after missing earnings estimates last night.
    • Previously: Prudential -2.15% after earnings miss
    | Nov. 6, 2014, 3:47 PM | 1 Comment
  • Nov. 3, 2014, 4:59 AM
    • MetLife (NYSE:MET) is due to meet the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) today in another bid to persuade regulators not to classify the insurer as "systemic."
    • Should MetLife receive the designation, it would face scrutiny from the Fed and have to hold high capital levels.
    • "MetLife has a strong case on the substance...but the FSOC is not likely to listen," says former Treasury official Phillip Swagel, who's now at the University of Maryland School of Public Policy.
    • The FSOC has sixty days to make a decision, which MetLife could then challenge in court if it's unsatisfied.
    | Nov. 3, 2014, 4:59 AM | 1 Comment
  • Oct. 29, 2014, 4:33 PM
    • Q3 operating earnings of $1.8B up 22% Y/Y. Operating EPS of $1.60 up 19%.
    • Book value per share excluding AOCI of $49.69 up 7% Y/Y.
    • Americas operating earnings of $1.5B up 14% Y/Y. Retail earnings of $699M up 6%. Group, Voluntary, & Worksite Benefits of $237M up 5%. Corporate Benefit Funding of $408M up 37%. Latin America of $152M up 22% on a constant currency basis.
    • Asia operating earnings of $306M up 19%. EMEA operating earnings of $96M up 13%.
    • Net investment income of $5.2B up 4%.
    • Conference call tomorrow at 8 ET
    • Previously: MetLife beats by $0.22, beats on revenue
    • MET +1.8% AH
    | Oct. 29, 2014, 4:33 PM | Comment!
  • Oct. 29, 2014, 4:11 PM
    • MetLife (NYSE:MET): Q3 EPS of $1.60 beats by $0.22.
    • Revenue of $17.91B (+6.5% Y/Y) beats by $190M.
    • Shares +1.3%.
    • Press Release
    | Oct. 29, 2014, 4:11 PM | Comment!
  • Oct. 28, 2014, 5:56 PM
    • MetLife, Inc. (NYSE:MET) declares $0.35/share quarterly dividend, in line with previous.
    • Forward yield 2.69%
    • Payable Dec. 12; for shareholders of record Nov. 7; ex-div Nov. 5.
    | Oct. 28, 2014, 5:56 PM | Comment!
  • Oct. 23, 2014, 11:03 AM
    • Still waging the last war, the regulatory generals of Basel have completed drafting "the first-ever global insurance capital standard." Beginning in 2015, nine companies which have been decreed as systemically important by the FInancial Stability Board (this is different than the U.S.'s SIFI-designation), will report a "basic capital requirements" ratio on a confidential basis.
    • The next stage set for the end of 2015 is the definition of "higher loss absorbency" requirements.
    • Among the list of nine: AIG, Allianz (OTCQX:AZSEY), MetLife (NYSE:MET), Axa (OTCPK:AXAHF, OTCQX:AXAHY), and Prudential (NYSE:PRU).
    | Oct. 23, 2014, 11:03 AM | 6 Comments
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Company Description
MetLife Inc is a provider of insurance, annuities & employee benefit programs in United States, Japan, Latin America, Asia, Europe & Middle East. It offers life insurance, annuities, property & casualty insurance, and other financial services.
Sector: Financial
Industry: Life Insurance
Country: United States