Many outstanding research papers on retirement income were published in 2013. The ten described here contain ideas that annuity product developers, annuity marketers and financial advisers can apply to their work.
At the LIMRA-Society of Actuaries Retirement Industry Conference in Baltimore last week, Scott Stolz from Raymond James, Greg Jaeck from Edward Jones and Jarrod Fisher from Simplicity Financial Distributors delivered frank opinions about annuities and annuity issuers.
Many factors are driving the increase in indexed annuity sales: More manufacturers, better products, more distributors, competitive commissions, aging boomers, and relaxed regulation. But does the bubble contain the seeds of its own deflation?
Israel has found that even a mandatory defined contribution system can’t resolve all of the behavioral, economic, or administrative issues that prevent low-income and minority workers from saving for retirement. (Photo: Mahane Yehuda market in Jerusalem.)
To reduce interest rate risk exposure, Prudential has adopted a protocol that allows it to change roll-up rates and payout rates on its living benefit riders within a month, if necessary. Other insurers applaud, but one broker-dealer hopes the practice doesn't spread.
An article by Steve Vernon of the Stanford Center on Longevity lists seven objections to annuities and offers counter-arguments to each. The issue also includes articles on tontines, on structured variable annuities and on the under-reporting of retirement income.
Indexed annuity sales set a new quarterly record of $11.9 billion, an increase of $1.7 billion from the third quarter. For 2013, indexed annuity sales totaled $39.3 billion, up 16% over 2012.
In April 2013, the Society of Actuaries commissioned the SOA Blue Ribbon Panel to address burning questions about public pension funding. The results of the Panel’s work were published last week.
"We will not allow the process to be derailed by other agendas; if a proposal does not meet our criteria, we will do everything we can to oppose and defeat it," said ASPPA and NAPA in response to Maryland legislation that calls for retirement plans in every workplace.
For overall retirement security, the U.S. remains behind the majority of countries in Western Europe and Canada, and ahead only of Israel on the list of the top 20 nations.
Brief or late-breaking items from Prudential Annuities, Woodbine Associates, the National Institute on Retirement Security, USAA and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.