The Retirement Industry Conference

Want lots of 2013 data on annuity sales and VA rider use? You’ll find it—plus Richard Thaler’s crowd-stumping riddle—in this roundup of news from the recent LIMRA/LOMA/SoA conference in Chicago.

Research Roundup

We summarize four recent papers: 'Portfolios for Long-Term Investors,' 'What is the Value of Annuities?,' 'Public Economics and Inequality: Uncovering Our Social Nature,' and 'Financial and Total Wealth Inequality with Low Interest Rates.'

An Annuity’s ‘Moneyness’? There’s an App for That

How will variable annuity contract owners use their income benefits? That question is vital to annuity issuers and to fiduciary advisers with clients who own VAs. This Texas Dep't of Insurance actuary knows a product that can help them find out.

A Chip Off the Old Rock?

Bloomberg reported this week that Prudential is considering selling its retirement plan recordkeeping business. Prudential didn't confirm the report, but several industry insiders did. Low interest rates, high costs of IT makeovers, and sticky stable value fund guarantees are driving the move, RIJ was told.
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Waiting for the Fiduciary Train

Don't hold your breath waiting for the second draft of the Department of Labor's fiduciary proposal. That's one takeaway from a four-hour meeting at the Practicing Law Institute in New York on Tuesday, where securities law experts mulled the history and implications of broker regulation.

Losing Interest

"Central banks should set a higher inflation target, which would give them more room to cut nominal interest rates in response to a future slowdown," writes economist Barry Eichengreen, who believes that interest rates and demand are too low.
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