Slow-ish Year for Annuity Product Development

There have been some new annuity products introduced this year, but they have not been in abundance and agents are looking for more to offer their clients.  Insurance News Net’s Linda Koco estimates that we may have to wait a bit longer in the article “2012 Could Be Rebuilding Year for Annuities.”  The article summarizes what happened this past year in the new annuity market and what is expected to happen in 2012.

The traditional deferred fixed annuity didn’t get much love this year, partly due to low interest rates and partly due to insurers worrying about guaranteeing any fixed rate at all.  Many annuity carriers brought new tools for their sellers and annuity clients to use, including online reporting and comparison tools.  While there were some new variable annuities introduced this year, they weren’t as exciting as in years past.  What is important in regards to the variable annuities is the focus on new GLB riders.  Some advisors say that clients will only purchase annuities with these guarantees in place.

Indexed annuity products are hotter than ever, boosted by large product development releases this year.  Even this month saw two new indexed annuity products, one from Hartford and one from Genworth.  Income products, including annuities, riders, and options are hot on the development list.  There were also some new immediate annuities this year as companies look to offer  more options to retirees.  So while this year wasn’t particularly exciting when it came to new product development, there are some new things out there and 2012 may be a more exciting year for annuity product development.

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