Where the Wealth Is

Do you build and wholesale financial products? Cerulli reports that the giant wirehouse channel shrank slightly last year, to the benefit of the fast-growing RIA and dually-registered advisor channels.

Cutting Longevity Tail Risk Down to Size

In a white paper published last month, Milliman actuaries describe a design for a mini defined benefit plan that a plan sponsor could tuck inside a defined contribution plan like a donut tire in the trunk of a car.

The Best Retirement Research of 2012

For the second consecutive year, we bring you the most intriguing, influential and useful retirement-related academic research that came to our attention in the prior year.

Variable Annuity Carriers ‘Mix It Up’ in Q4

"We may be at an inflection point, with the first carriers beginning to tweak products in small ways for competitive advantage despite the ongoing low interest rate environment," writes John McCarthy, Product Manager, Annuity Solutions, at Morningstar Inc.

Distribution of Wealth in the U.S.

This video, which has been viewed over four million times on YouTube, shows how the explosive growth of stock market wealth over the past 30 years has changed U.S. financial demographics to a degree that most Americans don't yet grasp.

When the Empire Didn’t Strike Back

Conservative reviewer Hutchinson praises Benn Steil's new book on the 1944 Bretton Woods negotiations, which documents how Britain lost its economic crown jewels at the historic conference in New Hampshire.

DC fee disclosure has little impact: LIMRA

“The disclosure notices — or the discussion of them — did seem to improve the knowledge of those who believed they didn’t pay any fees or expenses,” said Alison Salka, corporate vice president and director of LIMRA Retirement Research.

Financial tremors shake Poland’s retirement pillars

To help reduce a general budget deficit, the government has had to divert contributions away from the second pillar, a defined contribution plan whose Polish acronym is OFE, to the Pay-As-You-Go first pillar, whose Polish acronym is ZUS.

Western & Southern introduces ‘SmartStep’ fixed annuity

SmartStep offers four years of guaranteed rates: an initial rate set by the company followed by three years of stepped-up rates. At the end of the guarantee period, the contract is credited with an annual renewal rate set by the company.