Where are QBE (ASX:QBE) shares headed in 2022?

The giant insurer saw its stock price rocket in 2021. So which way will it go in the new year?
The post Where are QBE (ASX:QBE) shares headed in 2022? appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia. –

Insurance giant QBE Insurance Group Ltd (ASX: QBE) has been disappointing for buy-and-hold investors the past few years.

The share price has lost almost 10% over the last 5 years and more than 67% since its peak 14 years ago, just before the global financial crisis.

However, 2021 proved to be something of a comeback year for QBE shares.

Heading into the last 10 days of the year, the stock is up by around 32%.

So is it one to add to your portfolio for 2022?

‘Pricing tailwinds’ are coming for QBE shares

Morgans investment advisor Jabin Hallihan is one expert who’s bullish on QBE shares.

“Our forecast price target is $13.70 amid a dividend yield of 4.2%,” he told TheBull last week.

“The stock is relatively inexpensive as it was recently trading on a forecast price-earnings multiple of 12.8 times for fiscal year 2022.”

The QBE share price closed Tuesday at $11.29, implying an upside of more than 20% by Morgans’ projections.

Hallihan said “pricing tailwinds are evident”.

“QBE has increased insurance rates over the past year, which is likely to increase margins and underlying profit into 2022.”

QBE is ‘major beneficiary’ of rising interest rates

Another professional who likes QBE shares as we see off 2021 is Fat Prophets chief executive Angus Geddes.

He said that the insurer has made “substantial improvements” to its operations the last few years, and that’s about to bear fruit.

“Narrowing its focus has simplified the business and led to improving underwriting outcomes.”

Geddes agrees with Hallihan that pricing is an ace up QBE’s sleeve in the coming year.

“The insurance pricing market has become more rational, and QBE’s premiums have firmed considerably, which should continue, in our view,” he said.

“The business should be a major beneficiary ahead of a steepening yield curve.”

‘Strong buy’, say 6 of 8 analysts

Hallihan and Geddes are far from alone in their optimism for the QBE share price.

According to CMC Markets, 6 out of 8 analysts are currently rating the stock as a “strong buy”. The 2 dissenters are rating it as a “hold”.

QBE is now helmed by a fresh chief executive, Andrew Horton, who only started in September.

He said last month that his biggest challenge is to reform the culture of the company’s 11,500-strong workforce.

“It sounds very easy, but if it’s not natural to everybody, it’s going to be quite hard,” he told Insurance Business

“That’s why I need to start with the executive group, being supportive of each other and thinking towards the enterprise, and then cascade that down to the organisation.”

The post Where are QBE (ASX:QBE) shares headed in 2022? appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

Should you invest $1,000 in QBE right now?

Before you consider QBE, you’ll want to hear this.

Motley Fool Investing expert Scott Phillips just revealed what he believes are the 5 best stocks for investors to buy right now… and QBE wasn’t one of them.

The online investing service he’s run for nearly a decade, Motley Fool Share Advisor, has provided thousands of paying members with stock picks that have doubled, tripled or even more.* And right now, Scott thinks there are 5 stocks that are better buys.

*Returns as of August 16th 2021

More reading

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Own QBE (ASX:QBE) shares? New CEO reveals insurer’s biggest challenges

Why a leading broker is bullish on these 3 ASX shares

Could it be time to consider buying QBE (ASX:QBE) shares in November?

Motley Fool contributor Tony Yoo has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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