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Archive for July 2010

Indexed Annuities Regain AIG Unit After Banner Year

{July 31st, 2010} by Darla Mercado

July 30, 2010 | Investment News Copyright 2010 Crain CommunicationsAll Rights Reserved Investment News July 26, 2010 NEWS; Pg. 0019 326 words Indexed annuities regain AIG unit after banner year; Western National Life is relaunching Power Index Annuity Darla Mercado Western National Life Insurance Co. has jumped back into the indexed-annuity market after more than [...]

Allianz Life Hires 11 Regional Sales Vice Presidents

{July 29th, 2010} by N/A

July 29, 2010 | Business Wire Copyright: Business Wire Source: Business Wire Wordcount: unknown MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz) today announced the hiring of 11 regional vice presidents for Allianz Life Financial Services, LLC. Each new vice president will help develop a specific territory by increasing sales and brand loyalty [...]

Bankers Life To Pay $1.5M Penalty for Improper Annuity Sales in Wisconsin

{July 29th, 2010} by N/A

July 29, 2010 | States News Service Copyright 2010 States News Service States News Service July 28, 2010 Wednesday 599 words INSURANCE COMMISSIONER ANNOUNCES ANNUITY COMPANY BANKERS LIFE AND CASUALTY TO PAY RECORD $1.5 MILLION PENALTY States News Service MADISON, WI The following information was released by the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance: [...]

The mechanics of fixed indexed annuities, Pt. 1: The history and current industry status

{July 29th, 2010} by Randy Timm

By Randy Timm, VP Product Marketing, CLU, ChFC, FLMI Brokers International, Ltd. This article is the first in a series that will describe fixed indexed annuities and how they work. This article (and each consecutive article in the series) assumes that the reader has a general understanding of annuities. History of fixed indexed annuities The [...]

IRI: Annuity Change Filings Slow

{July 29th, 2010} by NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE

By NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE Published 7/28/2010  Insurers filed 76 material U.S. variable annuity changes in the second quarter, down from 213 in the second quarter of 2009. Advanced Sales and Marketing Corp., Oakbrook Terrace, Ill., has included those statistics in a report distributed by the Insured Retirement Institute, Washington. Most of the filings involved fee [...]

Response: Buyer beware: A primer on equity-indexed annuities and life settlements

{July 28th, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

PDF for Setting it Straight with Dian Vujovich ORIGINAL ARTICLE CAN BE FOUND AT: Buyer beware: A primer on equity-indexed annuities and life settlements Ms. Reingold and staff at the Palm Beach Daily News, I am an independent market research analyst who specializes exclusively in the indexed annuity (IA) and indexed life markets. I have tracked [...]

Dodd-Frank: SEC Issues Call for Comments

{July 28th, 2010} by Allison Bell

By ALLISON BELL Published 7/27/2010  The U.S. Securities and Exchange (SEC) has set up a Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act comment submission process. The SEC has posted a list of Dodd-Frank act comment submission form links, and it also has posted a separate request for comment on the standard of care that brokers, dealers [...]

Support Expands To Allow 401(K) Investments In Annuities

{July 27th, 2010} by Judy Greenwald

Copyright 2010 Crain CommunicationsAll Rights Reserved Business Insurance July 19, 2010 NEWS; Pg. 0048 580 words Support expands to allow 401(k) investments in annuities Judy Greenwald Many observers say putting at least part of 401(k) plan assets into an annuity, rather than presenting workers with only a lump sum at retirement, to spread out retirement [...]

Allianz Life Names Suzanne Dowd Zeller as Vice President Human Resources

{July 27th, 2010} by N/A

MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz) has named Suzanne Dowd Zeller as vice president of Human Resources. She will report directly to Allianz President and CEO Gary C. Bhojwani, and functionally to Yvonne Franzese, chief HR officer of Allianz of America, the holding company of Allianz Life. “Suzanne has a proven [...]

Compact Team Eyes Indexed-Linked Features

{July 27th, 2010} by NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE

By NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE Published 7/26/2010  Providing an annuity crediting feature through an insurance company’s general account is different from providing the same type of feature through a separate account. The Annuity Subgroup at the Interstate Compact National Standards Working Group is considering a proposal for “addition standards for [an] index-linked crediting feature provided through [...]

Missouri recovers half a million dollars for investors in alleged annuity scheme

{July 27th, 2010} by Steve Rosen

By STEVE ROSEN The Kansas City Star The state of Missouri has recovered at least $574,000 for more than 100 investors who bought annuities from a former Overland Park insurance agent who allegedly mishandled the funds.  A cease-and-desist order was filed against James Otto, who had worked for Bankers Life and Casualty Co.  Otto provided [...]

Rater: Indexed Annuity Ruling Will Stick

{July 27th, 2010} by NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE

By NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE Published 7/26/2010  The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is unlikely to return to the indexed annuity issue within the next 18 months. Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services (S&P), New York, gives that assessment in an announcement that the rating agency will changing its outlook on American Equity Investment Life Holding [...]

Response: Fixed Deferred Annuities: CDs With Gotchas

{July 23rd, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

PDF for Setting It Straight with Mel Lindauer ORIGINAL ARTICLE CAN BE FOUND AT: Fixed Deferred Annuities: CDs With Gotchas  Dear Forbes Editor, I recently had the occasion to read an article on your website, which is very misleading and inaccurate. “Fixed Deferred Annuities: CDs with Gotchas,” by Mel Lindauer reflects poorly on Forbes because of [...]

A.M. Best Downgrades Ratings of Sagicor Financial Corporation and Its Caribbean Life Insurance Subsidiaries

{July 23rd, 2010} by N/A

Press Release Source: A.M. Best Co. On Thursday July 22, 2010, 9:16 am EDT OLDWICK, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A.M. Best Co. has downgraded the financial strength rating (FSR) to A- (Excellent) from A (Excellent) and issuer credit ratings (ICR) to “a-” from “a” of Sagicor Life Inc. (St. Michael, Barbados) and its operating life insurance subsidiary, Sagicor [...]

Response: 5 ways to keep your cool in a scary market

{July 23rd, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

PDF for Setting it Straight with Janice Revell ORIGINAL ARTICLE CAN BE FOUND AT: 5 ways to keep your cool in a scary market Ms. Jane Revell, Apparently the only way to keep cool in a scary market is not to read CNN Money. Janice Revell, you know NOTHING about indexed annuities! Your statement “the only [...]

The SEC's Annuity Smackdown

{July 22nd, 2010} by Unknown

The agency fails in its latest lunge for power. The 2,300-page financial regulation bill that President Obama signed yesterday includes vast new powers for the Securities and Exchange Commission, including at least 95 separate new rule-makings. So it’s probably too much to ask that the SEC learn from its latest legal humiliation, but we can [...]

The SEC’s Annuity Smackdown

{July 22nd, 2010} by Unknown

The agency fails in its latest lunge for power. The 2,300-page financial regulation bill that President Obama signed yesterday includes vast new powers for the Securities and Exchange Commission, including at least 95 separate new rule-makings. So it’s probably too much to ask that the SEC learn from its latest legal humiliation, but we can [...]

Financial Planning Coalition Regrets SEC Taken Out of Indexed Annuities

{July 21st, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

July 21, 2010 | BestWire Copyright 2010 A.M. Best Company, Inc.All Rights Reserved BestWire July 20, 2010 Tuesday 04:40 PM EST 479 words Financial Planning Coalition Regrets SEC Taken Out of Indexed Annuities Jesse A Hamilton WASHINGTON The Financial Planning Coalition is disappointed that Congress chose to strip the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission of [...]

Indexed Annuities’ Battle with SEC Comes to An End

{July 21st, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

On July 21, 2010, a long and hard-fought battle with securities regulators was finally won by the insurance industry. After being under question for 13 years, the securities status of indexed annuities was finally and indefinitely settled when President Barack Obama signed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. The month of July [...]

Indexed Annuities’ Battle with SEC Comes to An End

{July 21st, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

  Indexed Annuities’ Battle with SEC Comes to An End On July 21, 2010, a long and hard-fought battle with securities regulators was finally won by the insurance industry. After being under question for 13 years, the securities status of indexed annuities was finally and indefinitely settled when President Barack Obama signed the Dodd-Frank Wall [...]

Schapiro Backs Off From Indexed Annuity Fight

{July 21st, 2010} by Arthur D. Postal

By ARTHUR D. POSTAL Published 7/20/2010  WASHINGTON BUREAU — The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission will be retreating from the Rule 151A battle but releasing a request for comments on a standard-of-care study “very soon,” SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro said today. Schapiro made her comments during an SEC oversight hearing organized by the House Financial Services [...]

AIG unit re-enters indexed-annuity market

{July 20th, 2010} by Darla Mercado

By Darla Mercado July 20, 2010 12:44 pm ET Western National Life Insurance Co., jumped back into the indexed-annuity market last week after more than 18 months on the sidelines. The subsidiary of American International Group Inc. stopped selling equity-indexed annuities in late 2008. At the time many insurers were curbing sales of the products [...]

Response: Scott Brown's Financial Regulation Failure

{July 20th, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

PDF for Setting it Straight with William A. Jacobson ORIGINAL ARTICLE CAN BE FOUND AT: Scott Brown’s Financial Reform Failure Mr. Jacobson, I am an independent market research analyst who specializes exclusively in the indexed annuity and indexed life markets. I have tracked the companies, products, marketing, and sales of these products for over a decade. [...]

Response: Scott Brown’s Financial Regulation Failure

{July 20th, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

PDF for Setting it Straight with William A. Jacobson ORIGINAL ARTICLE CAN BE FOUND AT: Scott Brown’s Financial Reform Failure Mr. Jacobson, I am an independent market research analyst who specializes exclusively in the indexed annuity and indexed life markets. I have tracked the companies, products, marketing, and sales of these products for over a decade. [...]

Response: Some Advisers Dismayed By Indexed Annuity Regulation

{July 19th, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

PDF for Setting it Straight with WSJ4 ORIGINAL ARTICLE CAN BE FOUND AT: Some Advisors Dismayed By Indexed Annuity Regulation  Ms. Maxey, I am an independent market research analyst who specializes exclusively in the indexed annuity and indexed life markets. I have tracked the companies, products, marketing, and sales of these products for over a decade. [...]

How provisions of financial reform will affect Iowa

{July 19th, 2010} by Karen Mracek

By KAREN MRACEK • kmracek@dmreg.com • July 16, 2010 The financial services industry employs about 81,000 employees in 6,100 businesses in Iowa. Iowa Bankers Association President John Sorensen expressed disappointment about the new regulations. “While some core provisions in the bill provide needed reform for Wall Street, we are very concerned about how the new [...]

Annuity Group: We Had a Good Week

{July 19th, 2010} by Warren S. Hersch

By WARREN S. HERSCH Published 7/16/2010  The National Association for Fixed Annuities is on a roll. First, the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals vacated U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Rule 151A, a regulation that could have put indexed annuities under the jurisdiction of the SEC, rather than state insurance regulators. Then, the Senate [...]

H.R. 4173: Senate Votes 60-39 to Pass Dodd-Frank Bill

{July 16th, 2010} by Arthur D. Postal

By ARTHUR D. POSTAL Published 7/15/2010  The Senate today passed and sent to President Obama historic legislation that would make the most sweeping changes to financial services regulation since the Great Depression. Members of the Senate voted 60-39 for H.R. 4173, the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act bill, after first clearing the bill [...]

Court Vacates Rule on Fixed Indexed Annuities

{July 16th, 2010} by Matthew Reynolds

By MATTHEW REYNOLDS       (CN) – Fixed indexed annuities should be subject to state rather than federal financial regulations, the D.C. Circuit ruled. The three-judge panel vacated an SEC rule regulating the financial products, saying the agency “failed to properly consider the effect of the rule upon efficiency, competition and capital formation.”      Fixed indexed annuities differ [...]

Florida Insurance Agent Challenges SEC Regulation and Wins

{July 15th, 2010} by N/A

July 14, 2010 Copyright: © PRNewsChannel. A Selig Multimedia, Inc. Company. Source: PRNewsChannel.com Wordcount: unknown SARASOTA, Fla. / Following a two-year David vs. Goliath battle that pitted insurance agents against federal regulators, a federal appeals court now sides with insurance agents and allows them to remain the sellers of indexed annuities. While financial markets were [...]

AXA Equitable Introduces Athena Indexed Universal Life Insurance

{July 15th, 2010} by N/A

New Product Offers Lifetime Coverage with Protected Exposure to Equity-linked Growth Potential NEW YORK, July 14 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company, a leading U.S. life insurer with a 150-year history, has introduced Athena Indexed Universal Life (Athena IUL), a new permanent life insurance policy with enhanced cash-value accumulation potential and downside protection. Athena [...]

Appeals Court Throws Out Annuity Patent Verdict

{July 15th, 2010} by Allison Bell

By ALLISON BELL Published 7/14/2010  A 3-judge panel at the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals has overturned a lower court’s variable annuity administration method patent case decision. Lincoln National Life Insurance Company and the defendants in the case, Transamerica Life Insurance Company and its affiliates, have been engaged in a dispute over whether the method Transamerica [...]

Response: High rates may leave you snakebit

{July 14th, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

PDF for Setting it Straight with Scott Burns3 ORIGINAL ARTICLE CAN BE FOUND AT: High rates may leave you snakebit Scott, Alas we meet again! As you well know, I am an independent market research analyst who specializes exclusively in the indexed annuity (IA) and indexed life markets. I have tracked the companies, products, marketing, and [...]

Response: Juicing Your Life Insurance

{July 14th, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

PDF for Setting It Straight with WSJ3 ORIGINAL ARTICLE CAN BE FOUND AT: Juicing Your Life Insurance  Leslie, As you VERY well know, I am an independent market research analyst who specializes exclusively in the indexed annuity (IA) and indexed life markets. This is a fact that is well-known and something that I have made clear [...]

US Court of Appeals Vacates 151A

{July 14th, 2010} by P.E. Kelley

Industry response is positive, cautious by P.E. Kelley, L&HA Managing Editor In a decision lauded by professionals across the financial services industry, the US Court of Appeals, District of Columbia, vacated SEC Rule 151a, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) controversial regulation which sought to classify equity-indexed annuities (EIA) as securities. The brief decision from [...]

The Battle of Rule 151A: The Indexed Annuity Community Takes on the SEC

{July 14th, 2010} by NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE

By NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE Published 7/13/2010  The fight over regulation of indexed annuities may be one of the most ferocious National Underwriter Life & Health has covered in recent years. State and federal securities regulators saw that indexed annuities offered investors the possibility that they could earn a return linked to a stock index, just [...]

Aviva Makes Life Reserve Financing Deal

{July 14th, 2010} by NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE

By NU ONLINE NEWS SERVICE Published 7/13/2010  Aviva Life and Annuity Company and a sister company, Aviva Life and Annuity Company of New York, have arranged $325 million in reserve financing. Aviva Life and Aviva Life of New York are both units of Aviva USA Corp., Des Moines, Iowa, which is, in turn, a unit of [...]

D.C. Court Vacates SEC Rule on Annuities Ahead of Senate Reform Vote

{July 13th, 2010} by Sean P. Carr

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ordered a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission rule to regulate equity-indexed annuities as securities to be vacated, dealing a victory to a coalition of annuity issuers and state insurance commissioners. The order in American Equity Investment Life Insurance Co., et al v. Securities and [...]

151A update: The court vacates the SEC ruling

{July 13th, 2010} by Daniel Williams

BY Daniel Williams Published 7/13/2010   More From This Issue » I received a note from Sheryl J. Moore, president and CEO of AnnuitySpecs.com this morning with an announcement that “the court has vacated the SEC’s rule 151A.” Moore has long been an opponent of 151A and has been calling for it to be overturned. Others fighting [...]

Response: COLUMN: Financial reform: The good, the bad, the ugly

{July 13th, 2010} by Sheryl J. Moore

PDF for Setting it Straight with Buz Livingston   ORIGINAL ARTICLE CAN BE FOUND AT: COLUMN: Financial reform: The good, the bad, the ugly Dear Mr. Livingston, I am an independent market research analyst who specializes exclusively in the indexed annuity (IA) and indexed life markets. I have tracked the companies, products, marketing, and sales of [...]

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