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A Face-lift for Variable Annuities

With interest rates on the rise, equity markets holding steady and the fiduciary regulations on the horizon, it’s not surprising that variable annuity products are seeing many new developments and enhancements. Other factors are also contributing to the flurry of change, including the appearance of a significant drop in sales last year. In 2015, variable annuity sales reached $133 billion, however in the first nine months of 2016, sales dropped 22% to $79.4 billion, according to a recent... Read More

Transamerica Launches Fee-based Variable Annuity

A new fee-based variable annuity is being launched by Transamerica in an effort to offer investors and advisors additional flexibility in retirement planning. The Transamerica Variable Annuity I-Share will charge an annualized fee based on a percentage of the investor’s assets, and is available through broker-dealer managed platforms. Additionally,  there will be no commission or surrender charges.   “The investment landscape is changing, and we see that investors and their advisors... Read More

Jackson National, AIG Led Second Quarter Annuity Sales

The LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute recently collected annuity sales data for their quarterly U.S. Individual Annuities Sales Survey. This information came from Investment News's article "Top 10 annuity sellers in the second quarter." Here is a summary of the second quarter sales figures before third quarter results are announced. Annuity sales increased between the first and second quarters of this year. During the second quarter, total annuity sales were $60.2 billion. This was 10% higher... Read More

Top Annuity Sellers for the 3rd Quarter

Third quarter annuity sales results were released last month.  LIMRA has released multiple reports detailing the annuity sales totals and the companies selling the most annuity products.  During the third quarter of 2014, annuity sales totaled $58.2 billion.  This total was a 2% decline from the first quarter of 2013.  The total for the first three quarters of this year was $177.7 billion, which is 6% higher than annuity sales during the first nine months of last year.  The variable... Read More

VA Living Benefit Riders Are Making A Comeback

A lot of the changes made to variable annuity products in the last year were negative.  But the most recent changes show that the variable annuity market looks to be on an upswing.  One of the most notable changes is that some life insurance companies are bringing back living benefit riders or offering better ones.  In addition to that, we are still seeing more investment focused variable annuities and some companies are still offering exchanges.  In Darla Mercado's Investment News article,... Read More

Jackson National & New York Life Sold the Most Annuities In 2013

The total annuity sales for 2013 were released last month and included some surprises and some results that were expected.  Daniel Williams of LifeHealthPro summarized all of the sales results in the article "Top 20 annuity sales leaders for 2013".  The results are divided into total annuity sales, fixed annuity sales, and variable annuity sales.  Jackson National Life was the top seller in both total annuity sales and variable annuity sales.  They sold $23.2 billion of annuities, $20.9... Read More

Changing Season for Variable Annuities

The annuity market is in a tough spot with variable annuities right now.  They are still good products and offer many investors benefits they can't get anywhere else, but low interest rates have made it hard for insurance companies to keep up the guarantees.  The living benefits have put a strain on insurance companies, so we should all be prepared for upcoming changes.  While they will  make an already complex product even more complex in some cases, changes will help the variable annuity... Read More

2013 Trends for Annuities as a Whole

This blog is, in essence, a continuation of yesterday's blog on what to expect in variable annuity trends for 2013.  But this entry deals with the annuity industry as a whole and what we think will be happening next year.  Producer's Web published a Life Health Pro article, "Annuities: 5 things to expect in 2013," where Maria Wood gives us some hints at changes to come.  Some of the changes I talked about that are likely in store for variable annuities will effect all annuities, while others... Read More

Variable Annuity Products Will Remain In Demand

Cogent research recently released study results in their Advisor Brandscape 2012 report.  They polled close to 2,000 financial advisors, all of whom maintain assets under management of at least $5 million.  This information comes from Financial Advisor magazine's "Variable Annuity Demand To Stay Strong, Says Survey."  Even though there has been volatility in the variable annuities marketplace, the advisors don't anticipate any drop in demand.  They plan to continue strong sales of variable... Read More

Variable Annuity Changes from MetLife, Prudential, Hartford

Three life insurance companies are changing their variable annuities in the wake of some tumult in the industry.  MetLife, Prudential, and the Hartford are either updating products or scaling down on variable annuity business, according to Darla Mercado of Investment News.  In her article, "VA changes at major insurers are afoot, executives say," Mercado summarized the changes we can soon expect. MetLife's net income increased by $1.07 billion from last year, to $2.26 billion.  Sales of... Read More

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