Hartford Looks to Sell More Variable Annuities

With the hiring of Steve Kluever from Jackson National Life Insurance Co., The Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. hopes to increase sales of their variable annuities.  Investment News' Darla Mercado writes about the surprise transition in "The Hartford nabs VA exec from Jackson."  Since Hartford and Jackson have taken very different approaches to business following the financial meltdown of the past few years, many industry insiders were surprised by this transfer.  Kluever will head a... Read More

Immediate Annuity and Social Security

While more Americans than ever are depending on Social Security to fund their retirement, most of those recently surveyed don't think that the money they receive will be enough to live on.  The study was performed by Hartford Financial and could mean big business for their annuity sales.  Annuity News Journal's article "Social Security Becoming More Important" by Errol Baddoo highlights the results of Hartford's survey.  Forty percent of those surveyed think that Social Security will be... Read More

Hartford's Variable Annuities Help Increase Shares

Increasing annuity sales and an improving stock market helped Hartford increase its share price to almost $25, up close to 5%.  This information comes from Christi Roberts' article in Annuity News Journal, "Hartford Shows Strong Earnings."  Hartford's third quarter income was $666 million, a huge improvement over the net loss of $200 million that they saw last year at this time.  While financial analysts predicted that Hartford would make 98 cents per share, they actually made $1.34 per... Read More

Immediate Annuities for Retirement Income

In Jeff Benjamin's Investment News article "Five ways to boost retirement income," immediate annuities are at the top of the list.  The best way for retirees to make the most of the retirement savings they have built is to have diverse yet safe investments that will continue to generate income even in retirement.  By establishing a steady income stream that will carry you through rough economic times, you will be able to have the flexibility to manuever through assets with some risk to... Read More

Despite a Fixed Annuity Decline, Annuity Sales Boomed in 2009

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... Read More

401k Annuities Rollovers Part of Obama's Recommendations

In the Chicago Sun-TImes, David Roeder describes why there is "Little payoff seeking the next Google."  He summarizes some of the latest financial news and goings-on.  Financial guys on TV always seem to be looking for the next company that will start from nothing and skyrocket to success, like Google or Apple.  But looking into the past 10 or so years, the companies with the highest expected growth potential actually had the worst annualized returns.  It seems that the lowest expectations... Read More

Variable Annuities Change to Benefit Everyone Involved

In "Insurers Retool Annuity Offerings" by Leslie Scism of the Wall Street Journal, Scism describes how insurance companies are making changes to the variable annuities they offer to lower their risk while maintaining the products' appeal to consumers.  The guarantees previously offered are the issue worrying many insurance companies.  While sales of variable annuities helped dozens of insurers grow exponentially over the past decade, the drop in the stock market brought the risk of these... Read More

Annuities will Remain at Hartford According to New CEO

As Liam E. McGee takes over as Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc.'s CEO, he has tough decisions to make to turn the company around.  The National Underwriter's Trevor Thomas describes the challenges and McGee's basic plans in "Hartford's McGee: Annuities Still On Menu."  With a $1.2 billion net loss for the first half of 2009 and federal bailout funds needed to survive, Hartford has been challenged to make better decisions and turn things around.  McGee is hopeful that he can do just... Read More

Fixed Annuities Updated For Longer Living

Deferred fixed annuity sales grew by close to 60% last year, according to an article by Janet Kidd Stewart in the Chicago Tribune.  It's really no surprise as life expectancies continue to rise and many people's life savings dwindle.  Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company actually has a calculator on their website to estimate your life expectancy, which can help determine how long you need to finance.  A one-time lump sum investment is paid out monthly starting at a date in the future... Read More

Hartford Financial President Steps Down

Hartford Financial's president and COO, Thomas Marra, is planning to retire, reports Diane Levick in the Hartford Courant. Marra was instrumental in building the firm's business in variable annuities, but the current stock market slump has hurt insurance companies, such as Hartford, that heavily rely on those products. Hartford is now taking heavy losses from the guaranteed minimum income benefits attached to those variable annuities, which they are still liable for. Marra will step down in... Read More

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