Where to Get Old Variable Annuities Appraised

Advisor Mark Cortazzo’s new business, Annuity Review, is aimed at alerting VA owners to the hidden value in contracts that they might otherwise surrender or misuse.

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.
Featured

RetiremEntrepreneur: Mark Cortazzo

In seven brief video clips, financial advisor Mark Cortazzo of MACRO Consulting Group talks about his new venture, Annuity Review, which helps investors and advisors evaluate in-force variable annuity contracts whose value they may not fully understand or appreciate.

Consensus? Not in Washington

The IRI Government, Legal and Regulatory conference last month had to be a downer for anyone who still naively hoped that the retirement industry and of the government might find constructive solutions to the problems that bedevil Boomer retirement.
News

Sen. Hatch hatches a retirement overhaul proposal

Under the Utah Republican's new proposal, state and local governments could use private annuity issuers as pension providers, small employers could sponsor low-maintenance "Starter 401(k)s" and the DoL would not be able to enact a fiduciary rule for plan advisors.

Based on consumption gains, poverty in America has fallen

Have liberal efforts to reduce poverty worked or failed? Are Americans richer than inequality hawks maintain? A new paper shows that poverty in the U.S. has declined over the past half-century if you measure wealth by consumption levels, not income levels.

NEST will lose its restrictions in 2017, not 2014

NEST is the UK's “public option” workplace retirement plan. It's intended to help solve a problem that the U.S. also faces: insufficient access to employer-sponsored retirement savings plans, especially among people who work at small companies, have modest incomes and belong to ethnic minority groups.