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Aflac resembles P&C insurer, says Macquarie

Macquarie analyst Sean Dargan on April 14 raised hisinvestment opinion on AflacInc. to "outperform" from "neutral," and raisedhis price target to $76 from $63.

"With solid underwriting margins in Japan, we believeAflac does not need sales growth at any costs nor does it need help frominterest rates to generate superior unlevered returns on capital forshareholders," he wrote. In that regard, the company more closelyresembles a P&C insurer.

The growing demand of third sector insurance products, whichcomprise cancer, medical and long-term care insurance, in Japan as well asAflac's position as a market leader in that line of business there, presents agreat growth opportunity for the insurer, according to Dargan.

Dargan raised his 2016 EPS estimate to $6.55 from $6.35,2017 EPS estimate to $6.90 from $6.75 and 2018 EPS estimate to $7.30 from $7.05.