Home / Archives for March 2012

Advisors' Biggest Successes: Life Insurance & Annuities

For the third year in a row, Senior Market Advisor publication has surveyed advisors to find out the best and worst of their industry.  According to a press release, their survey results have been published in the March issue.  They asked licensed financial and insurance advisors who work exclusively with seniors to report on multiple facets in the industry, including what really worries them and disrupts their sleep.  The survey provided great insight into what marketing campaigns are... Read More

Fixed Annuity Income Riders

The fixed annuity is an important tool to help you financially in retirement.  In the Leavenworth Times' "Dollars and Sense: Income riders a way to achieve retirement goals," Larry Martin discusses the different income rider options available with a fixed annuity.  I previously blogged about his retirement scenario related to a couple needing to save $345,000 and get a 6% return to reach their desired retirement savings.  Deferred fixed annuities are a good option for this couple because... Read More

Consider Annuities, Even as Markets Increase

According to Annuity News Journal's Henry Steelman, 2012 looks to be another popular year for annuities.  In the article, "Annuities for 2012 could see even more interest," it says that an increased interest in annuities began around five years ago.  That was the time that the financial markets took a deep downturn and worries over stock market investments increased.  Because of the lifetime guarantees offered by annuities, they are popular in retirement plans and with investors looking for... Read More

Tax Breaks with Advanced Life Deferred Annuities (ALDAs)

The Department of Treasury recently made it much easier for people to buy long-dated deferred income annuities, which are also known as longevity insurance or advanced life deferred annuities (ALDAs). The new regulations mean, for instance, that if you use tax-deferred assets to buy an ALDA at age 60 that will pay out an income if and when you reach age 85, you don’t have to count those assets when you calculate how much you must withdraw from your tax-deferred accounts as annual required... Read More

Ensure Suitability of Fixed Annuity with NAFA

NAFA, the National Association for Fixed Annuities, wants you to be informed about anything and everything related to fixed annuity products.  Since next month is Financial Literacy Month, NAFA came up with a new publication to inform everyone about fixed annuities and answer any lingering questions.  According to their press release, NAFA wants people to use this document to ensure the suitability of a fixed annuity related to their individual needs. Their Education Committee created "Tips... Read More

MetLife’s Annuities Should Still Be Considered

MetLife made big news in mid-March by failing a Federal Reserve “stress test” administered to 19 megabanks. Federal regulators are expected to classify it eventually as a “Systemically Important Financial Institution,” i.e., “Too big to fail.” Should that make you eliminate MetLife from your list of acceptable annuity providers? I don’t think so. If you follow annuities, you probably regard MetLife as a big publicly held life insurance company that also issues a lot of... Read More

Government Makes Annuity Purchases Easier

We've talked a lot in this blog about the recent federal government interest in annuity products and their use in retirement.  Christi Roberts' Annuity News Journal article, "Annuity rules proposed by treasury," details some of the proposed changes and their purpose for Americans.  Companies holding 401k's or pensions have been concerned about offering annuities because they believe the fees are high and they may choose the "wrong" insurance company.  The government is looking for ways to... Read More

Upside of Low Interest Rates

Indexed annuities have been getting a lot of attention lately, thanks in part to the fact that their optional living benefit riders are a bit more generous than similar riders on variable annuities. They’ve also taken a welcome step that could lead to greater price transparency, indexed annuity expert Jack Marrion of AdvantageCompendium.com recently explained to me. The low interest rate environment, ironically, seems to be responsible for this positive effect, he said. As I understand it,... Read More

Fixed & Indexed Annuities Balance Risk with Returns

Larry Martin of the Leavenworth Times in Kansas has a pyramid example of retirement investing.  In the article "Annuities good retirement savings options," Martin says that both fixed annuities and indexed annuity products are good options for growing your retirement savings.  His example includes a couple looking to save for retirement and pondering the best options.  The safest investments are at the top of his pyramid and the most risky are at the bottom.  Bank's savings accounts and... Read More

New Annuity Upgrades From Vanguard

Vanguard recently made some positive changes to their annuity and mutual fund products, according to Forbes' Mel Lindauer.  The article, "Welcome changes at Vanguard," highlights three important changes made by the company.  First, Vanguard eliminated their Asset Allocation Fund, which allowed the fund managers to use whatever percentage of equities they felt was best.  This Asset Allocation Fund had been used in Vanguard's LifeStrategy Funds and took away the investors' ability to manage... Read More

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