Athene Holding (NYSE: ATH) and Manulife Financial Corp (NYSE:MFC) are both mid-cap life & health insurance – nec companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, dividends, profitability, analyst recommendations, earnings, valuation and risk.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent ratings and price targets for Athene Holding and Manulife Financial Corp, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Athene Holding 0 4 12 0 2.75
Manulife Financial Corp 0 1 0 0 2.00

Athene Holding presently has a consensus price target of $59.25, indicating a potential upside of 20.21%. Manulife Financial Corp has a consensus price target of $27.00, indicating a potential upside of 28.27%. Given Manulife Financial Corp’s higher probable upside, analysts clearly believe Manulife Financial Corp is more favorable than Athene Holding.


Manulife Financial Corp pays an annual dividend of $0.66 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.1%. Athene Holding does not pay a dividend. Manulife Financial Corp pays out 46.2% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Manulife Financial Corp has increased its dividend for 3 consecutive years.


This table compares Athene Holding and Manulife Financial Corp’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Athene Holding 22.66% 13.31% 1.15%
Manulife Financial Corp N/A 11.55% 0.64%

Institutional & Insider Ownership

48.9% of Athene Holding shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 45.9% of Manulife Financial Corp shares are held by institutional investors. 10.6% of Athene Holding shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares Athene Holding and Manulife Financial Corp’s top-line revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Athene Holding $4.11 billion 2.40 $805.00 million $7.15 6.89
Manulife Financial Corp $40.27 billion 1.03 $2.26 billion $1.43 14.72

Manulife Financial Corp has higher revenue and earnings than Athene Holding. Athene Holding is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Manulife Financial Corp, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.


Athene Holding beats Manulife Financial Corp on 10 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Athene Holding

Athene Holding Ltd. is an insurance holding company. The Company’s segments include Retirement Services, Corporate and Other. Retirement Services segment consists of the United States and Bermuda operations, which issue and reinsure retirement savings products and institutional products. Retirement Services has retail operations, which provide annuity retirement solutions to its policyholders. Retirement Services has reinsurance operations, which reinsure multi-year guaranteed annuities, fixed indexed annuities, traditional one year guarantee fixed deferred annuities, immediate annuities and institutional products from its reinsurance partners. It offers two product lines: annuities and funding agreements. It offers deferred and immediate annuities, which are focused on the needs and objectives of people preparing for, approaching or living in retirement. It focuses on issuing funding agreements to institutional investors. Its life and other products include other retail products.

About Manulife Financial Corp

Manulife Financial Corporation (MFC) is a holding company of The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company (MLI), which is a life insurance company, and John Hancock Reassurance Company Ltd. (JHRECO), which is a reinsurance company. The Company operates as a financial services company with principal operations in Asia, Canada and the United States. The Company’s segments include Asia Division, Canadian Division, U.S. Division, and the Corporate and Other. The Company operates as Manulife in Canada and Asia and primarily as John Hancock in the United States. The product and service offerings under its Asia, Canadian and U.S. Divisions include Protection, Wealth and Asset Management, and Other Wealth. The Corporate and Other segment includes external asset management business, Property and Casualty (P&C) Reinsurance Business, and run-off reinsurance operations, including variable annuities, and accident and health.

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