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Variable Annuities at a Seventeen Year High

Variable annuity assets increased by the largest margin in 17 years in the second quarter of 2009, according to Andrew Frye of Bloomberg.com.  His article “Variable Annuity Assets Advance Most in 17 Years,” lists the main reasons as a stock market rise and an increase in the amount that savers are investing.  The total variable annuity assets reached $1.19 trillion to end the second quarter.  This was a big help to the largest two life insurers, MetLife Inc. and Prudential Financial Inc.  A 15% jump in the S&P 500 Index helped the funds backing these variable annuities remain strong.

The Insured Retirement Institute’s Cathy Weatherford believes that consumers will remain careful with their investments, even as the economy stabilizes.  She thinks that 401k annuity rollovers and other annuity purchases will remain high as people continue to save and want to ensure their money is safe.  With government money helping to stabilize the economic and housing markets, the home price index showed its first increase since 2006.  The top provider of variable annuities, MetLife, had a 27% sales increase and Prudential had a 23% increase.  Variable annuity sales are surging as markets increase and consumers seek good investments.  See if they are right for you by contacting an expert.

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