Voya: From Orange to Origami

Almost four years after its IPO, Voya (formerly ING-US) has rebranded, retooled itself as a fixed indexed annuity shop and launched an ad campaign featuring origami rodents that talk. But it is still searching for the right mix of products, personnel and organizational structure.

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.

Will your grandkids shop for annuities on Amazon?

'Should decide to make a large scale entrance into the insurance marketplace, this could further disrupt the current U.S. life insurance distribution model,' A.M. Best said in a release.

Calculating After-Tax Social Security Benefits

A handy crib sheet recently published by Vanguard shows the formulae for calculating the portion of an individual's or couple's Social Security benefits that will be subject to ordinary income tax.

Charles Schwab offers hybrid-robo with $25k minimum

Most clients will be invested in a fully automated, diversified portfolio using Schwab Intelligent Portfolios comprised of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) from Schwab, Vanguard, iShares and PowerShares.