Like the Ford Mustang in 1965, the variable annuity with a lifetime income rider seemed like the right Boomer product at the right time in 2006. Then came the Crisis. A new survey by Cogent Research and the Insured Retirement Institute looks at where the VA is today and where it's headed.
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.)
Another “very bright spot in the third quarter data was the significant increase in net cash flow, to $8.9 billion from $5.7 billion in the second quarter and $6.4 billion in the third quarter of 2010,” wrote Frank O’Connor, product manager of the VA database at Morningstar.
"It's an interesting environment," said Beacon Research CEO Jeremy Alexander (left). "The word is that some carriers are keeping a lid on business" because of the low rates.
Calling all investment advisers and financial planners: RIJ wants to hear from you about the tools you use to help your clients create retirement income.
Noticeably absent from the DOL’s September 19th release, and statements by DOL officials, is any suggestion of a broad revision of the regulation, writes Fred Reish, the well-known ERISA attorney at Drinker, Biddle & Reath.
The British automaker's defined benefit plan assets stood at £7.8bn ($12.3bn) last December, with a surplus of around £700m ($1.1bn).
The new regime would be one with no investment choices for plan participants to make. "Our members... are blue-collar workers and typically don't want to make investment decisions themselves," said the plan's chief investment officer.
The dollar's share of global currency reserves has declined over the last 10 years as emerging markets rely less on external debt and move from fixed to floating exchange rates, a new report says.
An article in last week's cover story ("Airbag-Equipped Annuities") erred in reporting that MassMutual had stopped selling variable annuities. The company said it has simply narrowed distribution to its career channel and has sold $675 million worth of VAs so far in 2011.