Date posted: August 26, 2011
According to Insurance Networking News’ Justin Stephani, “Annuity Writers Show Significant Growth.” In a fixed annuity study performed by Beacon Research, they found that despite an annuity rates comparison showing declining interest rates, fixed annuity sales increased 8% quarter to quarter and 3% year to year. These results from the first half of this year coincide with similar reports from LIMRA and the Insured Retirement Institute. LIMRA found a 19% year over year increase for total annuity sales, in the period ending June 30. The IRI reported a 10% increase for the second quarter’s year over year figures and a quarterly sales increase of 4%.
Beacon research was expecting increases in the indexed and income annuity products, especially because indexed annuity cap rates are still desirable compared to other choices. They were expecting declines in both types of fixed annuities because of low interest rates, but only saw a decline in one of them. Fixed rate non-market value adjusted (MVA) annuities were the only category to decline, dropping 5%. Fixed rate MVA’s actually increased 4%, probably because investors seeking higher yields were happy with the slightly higher rates offered. Income annuities increased 30% and indexed annuities went up 18%. Western National Life sold more than $2 billion in fixed annuities for the top spot, followed by Allianz and New York Life.
Written by Rachel Summit
Date posted: June 9, 2011
Fixed annuity sales increased 6% in the first quarter of this year to a level of $18.9 billion. The Annuity News Journal article; “Sales of Fixed Annuities are Making a Comeback” by Zachary Dristol, says that sales increased in all four types of annuities. Book value annuities increased by 12%, moving to $8.6 billion in assets. Market value adjusted annuities increased by 7% and income based annuities increased by .8%. While there was only a minimal .2% increase in indexed annuity products, their increases over the past year or so have been so significant that the assets are still very high.
From the fourth quarter of last year to the first quarter of this year, book value annuity assets increased by 42%. In the same time frame, annuity sales in general increased by 7%. Beacon Research’s CEO said that increasing annuity rates during the first quarter were likely the reason for the fixed annuity sales increase. In comparison to fixed and variable annuities, indexed annuity products lost some ground probably just due to seasonal changes. After the financial crisis of 2008, the annuity industry worked hard to distance itself from AIG and be seen for their guaranteed retirement income again. The top five annuity sellers in the first quarter were Western National, New York Life, Allianz, American Equity, and Aviva.
Date posted: September 10, 2010
BBVA Compass is collaborating with Western National Life Insurance Company on a new fixed annuity product, according to Insurance News Net’s “BBVA Compass Announces Strategic Alliance with Western National to Launch Branded Annuity.” The BBVA Compass Asset Annuity has a flexible-premium and is tax deferred. It is only offered through BBVA Compass Insurance Agency, Inc., but is guaranteed by Western National, a leader in the fixed annuities market. This marks the first time that BBVA Compass is both cobranding an annuity and managing some of the assets for the underwriting insurance company.
The Asset Builder Annuity should meet the needs of people nearing retirement that desire smart options for their money. BBVA Compass Wealth Management will manage some of the assets for Western National, so both companies are very motivated to see what they believe is one of the best annuities succeed. Western National is the top provider of fixed annuities through the bank channel and is known as a pioneer for new fixed annuity products sold specifically through banks. Both companies share a commitment to providing their clients with innovative and customized annuity products that help meet their financial goals better.
Date posted: August 31, 2010
According to Investment News’ article “NY Life tops 2Q list of fixed-annuities sellers” by Darla Mercado, fixed annuity sales increased from the first quarter of this year to the second quarter. With sales of $19.4 billion in the second quarter, fixed annuity sales increased 18% from the first quarter but went down 30% from last year. New York Life Insurance Co. sold $1.74 billion of fixed annuities to nab the top sales spot. Allianz Life Insurance Co. of North America had the second largest fixed annuity sales of $1.68 billion. With sales of $1.61 billion, Aviva USA had the third highest sales. AIG’s subsidiary Western National Life had the fourth highest fixed annuity sales of $1.29 billion, while the fifth highest sales of $1.05 billion were from American Equity Investment Life Insurance Co.
Many believe that the widening spread between fixed annuity rates and Treasury rates is accounting for the increase in fixed annuity sales. The wider spread also makes it more profitable for insurance companies to handle fixed annuity business. While fixed annuities have been harder to sell recently, there has been quite an increased interest in fixed indexed annuity products because of their cap rates. Variable annuities have also seen a sales increase, according to multiple reports. The $34.4 billion of variable annuities sold this past quarter was an increase from $31.8 billion last year. New variable annuities sold this quarter totaled $6.22 billion, up from $6.14 billion last quarter. An increased interest in both variable and fixed annuity products means that investors are looking for secure ways to ensure that their income lasts for the remainder of their lifetime.
Date posted: January 25, 2010
Investment News‘ Darla Mercado summarizes the variable and fixed annuity sales of 2009 in her article “Banks’ annuity fee income rose, FA sales fell in ’09 3Q.” Through the first three quarters of last year, bank holding companies saw the fee income from their annuity sales increase. The sale of fixed annuities however, decreased in the third quarter due to their decline in popularity through 2009. With $2 billion in fee income from variable and fixed annuity sales during the first three quarters of 2009, banks saw a 2.5% increase from the same time frame during the previous year. Commissions increased 4% during the third quarter, according to a report of the top 922 bank holding companies. Overall, 71% of the largest banks accounted for almost 95% of the total annuity commissions.
Wells Fargo held the top spot even though their income was actually down from the comparable period in 2008. In second place was JP Morgan Chase & Co who also saw a decline from 2008, albeit a small one. Regions Financial Corp. and Bank of America Corp. saw the largest gains in annuity fee income during the three quarter time period. Western National Life was the largest seller of fixed annuities, despite the product taking an overall decline in the third quarter. Three companies made their way onto the top 10 list of bank annuity sellers last year. Jackson National Life Insurance Co., ING USA, and Hartford Life Insurance Company came onto the top ten list in 7th, 8th, and 9th places. Annuities hold strong as important financial products, despite some declines in the fixed annuity sales.