Financial Review: Mercury General (MCY) versus The Competition

Mercury General (NYSE: MCY) is one of 150 public companies in the “INSURANCE” industry, but how does it contrast to its competitors? We will compare Mercury General to related businesses based on the strength of its dividends, risk, analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings, profitability and institutional ownership.


This table compares Mercury General and its competitors’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Mercury General 4.24% 5.14% 1.82%
Mercury General Competitors 4.15% 3.30% 0.91%


Mercury General pays an annual dividend of $2.50 per share and has a dividend yield of 5.2%. Mercury General pays out 95.4% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future. As a group, “INSURANCE” companies pay a dividend yield of 1.7% and pay out 23.8% of their earnings in the form of a dividend. Mercury General has raised its dividend for 32 consecutive years.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent recommendations for Mercury General and its competitors, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Mercury General 0 0 0 0 N/A
Mercury General Competitors 918 3927 4471 215 2.42

As a group, “INSURANCE” companies have a potential downside of 4.85%. Given Mercury General’s competitors higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Mercury General has less favorable growth aspects than its competitors.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

46.3% of Mercury General shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 63.6% of shares of all “INSURANCE” companies are held by institutional investors. 34.3% of Mercury General shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 13.1% of shares of all “INSURANCE” companies are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Mercury General and its competitors top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Net Income Price/Earnings Ratio
Mercury General $3.42 billion $144.87 million 18.35
Mercury General Competitors $15.98 billion $1.32 billion 9.17

Mercury General’s competitors have higher revenue and earnings than Mercury General. Mercury General is trading at a higher price-to-earnings ratio than its competitors, indicating that it is currently more expensive than other companies in its industry.

Risk and Volatility

Mercury General has a beta of 0.48, suggesting that its share price is 52% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Mercury General’s competitors have a beta of 0.94, suggesting that their average share price is 6% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Mercury General Company Profile

Mercury General Corporation is an insurance holding company. As of December 31, 2016, the Company and its subsidiaries were engaged in writing personal automobile insurance through 14 insurance subsidiaries in 11 states, principally California. Its segments include Property and Casualty Lines, and Other Lines. Its Property and Casualty segment offers various insurance products to its individual customers and small business customers. Its Other segment offers automobile mechanical breakdown warranties, which are sold through automobile dealerships and credit unions. It also writes homeowners, commercial automobile, commercial property, mechanical breakdown and umbrella insurance. Its insurance policies are sold through independent agents. As of December 31, 2016, it sold its policies through approximately 9,700 independent agents, its owned insurance agencies, Auto Insurance Specialists LLC and PoliSeek AIS Insurance Solutions, Inc., and directly through Internet sales portals.

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