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Annuity Products Help MetLife Surge

MetLife is one of the top life insurance companies, and their annuity products are a big reason why.  According to “MetLife Annuities See Positive Outlook” by Errol Baddoo of the Annuity News Journal, the company’s annuity sales are soaring.  While they didn’t take first place in annuity sales in 2010, MetLife’s annuity sales of almost $21 billion made the top 5.  Their variable annuities sold $18 billion in 2010, a 19% increase from 2009.  While fixed annuity sales declined by 65%, they still accounted for around $2 billion in sales for MetLife.  Fixed annuities skyrocketed in popularity during the recent economic crisis because of their stability in a volatile marketplace.  As the economy has improved and variable annuities have increased in popularity, it only makes sense to see somewhat of a decline in fixed annuity sales.

MetLife’s newest variable annuity, a joint force with Fidelity Investments, is called the MetLife Growth and Guaranteed Income variable annuity.  In its first 12 months in the marketplace, this new variable annuity accounted for $1 billion in sales.  Some of MetLife’s other products include multiple annuity offerings like the 401k annuity, life insurance, other insurance plans, and a plethora of other retirement plan options.  Their biggest competitors are AIG, Hartford Financial, and Prudential Financial, the last of which took the top spot in annuity sales in 2010 with $23 billion.  MetLife’s stock value of $48.83 is 10% higher than the current market price, according to the Trefis stock price estimate.  Annuity products make up around 17% of the stock value for MetLife.  The company expects their newest variable annuity and other annuity products to add even more sales in 2011.

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