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Archive for December 2013

New year could bring a boon for annuities

{December 31st, 2013} by N/A

Higher taxes may drive interest in variable and indexed annuities; potential of rising rates could inspire new products Next year could be a big one for variable and indexed annuities, both in terms of sales and product development, as new tax and interest rate realities sink in. This year set what appeared to be a [...]

Register Exclusive: Des Moines to host insurance symposium

{December 31st, 2013} by Matthew Patane

Organizers want experts, executives to discuss issues facing industry Insurance and economic development leaders are building on Iowa’s reputation as an insurance industry hub to attract the world’s leading insurance officials to Des Moines for a two-day event next year. Iowa Insurance Commissioner Nick Gerhart will announce today the inaugural Global Insurance Symposium. The symposium [...]

Iowa to Host Global Insurance Symposium in 2014

{December 31st, 2013} by 2013 Associated Press

Iowa officials say a new insurance symposium set for next year in Des Moines is aimed at bringing top industry experts to the area. Iowa Insurance Commissioner Nick Gerhart said the two-day Global Insurance Symposium will attract industry experts and regulatory authorities from around the world, The Des Moines Register reported. Gerhart said the symposium [...]

How financial advisers should focus their core values

{December 30th, 2013} by Scott Hanson

The most important stake that you’ll drive into the ground in support of your company’s foundation should be comprised of your core values. But what exactly are these core values, and when it comes to developing them, who precisely should they be created for? Rather than thinking of them as a client-facing marketing tool, your [...]

Annuities: 4 predictions for 2014

{December 30th, 2013} by Maria Wood

Will annuity sales continue their upward track in 2014? How will an uptick in interest rates impact insurers? What’s brewing on the regulatory front? Click here to view…

Lessons in Caring

{December 30th, 2013} by NAIC

Singer Amy Grant to baby boomers Singer-songwriter Amy Grant knows firsthand the complex and emotional decisions facing today’s baby boomers. In 2011, Grant moved her ailing mother into her home to surround her with family during her final days battling dementia. Today, Grant and her sisters are caring for their dad as he suffers from [...]

Insurance regulators step up activity

{December 29th, 2013} by IFAwebnews Staff

Five years after the financial crisis, insurance regulators in the U.S. and abroad are stepping up efforts to show progress toward group level supervision and capital standards, according to a new report from Fitch, “Group Capital Standards for U.S. Insurers.” The year 2013 saw several large global insurance groups designated as “systemically important” and subject [...]

Resolution For Advisors In 2014: Think About Your Business Model

{December 28th, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

With a new year around the corner, financial advisors may want to think about tweaking their business models. Could $250 be the new $2,500? Maybe, according to one consumer financial trends expert. At the very least, the idea is worth exploring. “Consumers do see value in having a conversation with another human about finances but [...]

The Producers Group Announces The Women’s Professional Group

{December 27th, 2013} by Eric Freundt

The WPG will exist as a distinctive group to specifically address the needs of women producers. San Diego, CA – The Producers Group, a leader in Life Insurance Brokerage, seeks to expand its level of expertise by introducing the Women’s Professional Group (WPG) to its repertoire. The WPG will largely be made up of financial [...]

Financial professionals underestimate appeal of annuities

{December 27th, 2013} by IFAwebnews Staff

Consumers perceive annuities more positively than financial professionals give them credit for, according to The Future of Retirement Income, a new study released by Genworth. The study, a culmination of in-depth interviews, focus groups and quantitative surveys with financial professionals, annuity owners and non-annuity owners, revealed that 68% of non-annuity owners have a neutral to [...]

When Being ‘All Business’ Is A Turn-Off

{December 27th, 2013} by Linda Koco

Amy Florian was having dinner one evening at the home of a financial advisor. During the course of conversation, the advisor mentioned that he didn’t always know what to say to clients who had just suffered the loss of a loved one. He felt awkward and wanted her to coach him. She was working in [...]

A New Year Brings A New Chance To Talk About Financial Security

{December 27th, 2013} by Todd A. Silverhart

Reprinted from the January 2014 issue of InsuranceNewsNet Magazine. The arrival of 2014 brings with it the fresh anticipation of everything we hope to achieve while working with a brand-new calendar. For those in the business of providing financial security, it’s the perfect time to meet with clients to set them on a positive course [...]

InsurMark Expands Exclusive GameChangerAcademy.com

{December 27th, 2013} by PRWeb

“Members Only Subsite” Where Financial Advisors Share Secrets of Success Houston, TX (PRWEB) December 18, 2013 In preparation for highly anticipated business growth in 2014, members of Game Changer Academy (GCA), InsurMark’s exclusive club where one of the industry’s top annuity and life insurance producer shares his success strategies, now have game-changing sales tools at [...]

Americans Enter 2014 With False Sense Of Financial Security.

{December 26th, 2013} by Close-Up Media

The 5th annual New Year’s Resolution Survey from Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz Life) revealed that although only five years have passed since the 2008-2009 financial crisis, many Americans seem to have forgotten the trauma it caused to their portfolios and may now have a false sense of security about their current [...]


2 biggest arguments in favor of annuities

{December 26th, 2013} by John L. Olsen and Michael E. Kitces

Annuities have, for many years, been the subject of considerable debate among financial planners, insurance agents, financial journalists and academics. While some of this discussion is dispassionate, a surprising amount of it is not. Much of what is written on the subject — especially by those opposed to annuities — is outright polemic. The debate [...]

World Finance Insurance Awards 2013

{December 26th, 2013} by World Finance

With insurance markets going through a prolonged period of change, firms have had to become more and more impressive, efficient and client-friendly in order to stay ahead of the competition. In the World Finance Insurance Awards 2013, we celebrate these organizations that are carrying the torch for the industry, creating new options, and providing the [...]

Is Pinterest useful for financial advisers?

{December 26th, 2013} by Caitlin Zucal

For every financial planner that has finally started blogging, Pinterest’ s new enhanced pin feature is something to get excited about. Before, Pinterest was believed to be the social network to use if you had photographs, recipes and retail products to promote. But, with new “article” pins, Pinterest is now making an appeal to content [...]

Finra seeks new monitoring system for customer accounts

{December 26th, 2013} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

Says it would more quickly identify potential red flags signaling misconduct Finra is proposing an automated data collection system that will allow it to gather information from brokerage firm customer accounts that could more quickly and efficiently identify harmful sales practices. On Monday, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. released a request for comment on [...]

Our 7 favorite celebrity insurance spokespeople

{December 26th, 2013} by Juliahna Green

The American population is woefully underinsured and uninsured. Can celebrity spokespeople bridge the gap? Maybe, maybe not, but some of them sure seem to be enjoying themselves while trying. Click here to view

Life industry to grow through 2015

{December 26th, 2013} by Warren S. Hersch

Top-line growth for the life insurance industry will vary between three and four percent in 2014 and 2015, new research shows. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reveal this forecast in a report detailing the outlook for life insurers in 2014. Underpinning the growth forecast, the study indicates, are “solid investment flows” and fees derived from “strong [...]

Athene’s financial strength rating affirmed (Fitch Ratings Inc.)

{December 26th, 2013} by Insurance Networking News

Thursday, December 26, 2013 11:21 AM   Fitch Ratings Inc. has affirmed the insurer financial strength rating of Athene Annuity & Life Assurance Co. at BBB+ (Good) and removed it from rating watch negative, with a stable rating outlook, Insurance Networking News reported. Fitch placed Athene on rating watch negative on Dec. 21, 2012, following the company’s [...]


A Life Insurance Producer’s Guide to 2014

{December 26th, 2013} by Kenneth A. Shapiro

Ushering in the new with a firm grip on the old by Kenneth A. Shapiro Mr. Shapiro is president of First American Insurance Underwriters, Inc., a national life insurance brokerage firm based in Needham, Mass. and specializing in coaching growth-oriented producers. He began his career with Northwestern Mutual Life and later worked for The Guardian [...]

Making the most of the holiday season

{December 26th, 2013} by Joe Duran

The holiday season is in full swing. As year-end rolls in, it is an opportune time to reflect on how much we appreciate our family, staff, friends and clients. As I think about appreciation, I’m fine with admitting that it feels a lot nicer when it’s a two-way street. It seems like an appropriate time [...]

True Life

{December 23rd, 2013} by Mitch Anthony

“…one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.” —Luke 12:15 After my friend sold his beautiful, spacious boat, he told me that there’s no better place to learn about one’s inclination toward covetousness than on a harbor dock. He also informed me of the boater’s maxim, “Comparison is the killer of contentment.” He continued, “On [...]

Women in the advice business

{December 23rd, 2013} by IN Special Reports

Are women on the rise or dropping out of the career track before the next promotion? A snapshot from the 2013 InvestmentNews/Moss Adams Adviser Compensation and Staffing Study capturing gender breakdown of pay and work in the advisory industry.    

Fixed-Rate MVA Annuities Make A Big Splash

{December 23rd, 2013} by Linda Koco

Fixed-rate market value adjusted (MVA) annuities made a big splash in third quarter, with sales jumping 88.1 percent over the previous quarter and 131.5 percent over third quarter last year, according to Beacon Research. The products represented 11 percent of total fixed annuity sales in third quarter, up from 7.7 percent in second quarter, Beacon [...]

Survey Finds Advice Has Biggest Impact On Gen Y

{December 23rd, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

Members of Generation Y have fewer assets than those who belong to Generation X and the baby boom generation, but Gen Y is more likely to heed advisors and alter their savings habits, a survey from the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association-College Retirement Equities Fund (TIAA-CREF) has found. Gen Y, Americans born between the late [...]

GAO Eyes Income Options — Including Annuities

{December 23rd, 2013} by Linda Koco

One of the challenges that agents and advisors face when presenting income annuities to clients is how to help customers understand what factors impact retirement income outcomes. That is especially difficult for annuity producers who have previously focused on helping people accumulate assets through annuities or other products.  How do they flip over to the [...]

AP Photo/Karly Domb Sadof, File

Instagram and Pinterest are getting big likes from business owners

{December 23rd, 2013} by Joyce M. Rosenberg, Associated Press

Small businesses are using social media to promote their businesses and lure shoppers this holiday season — and they’re not just on Facebook. Or Twitter. Pinterest and Instagram are getting big “likes” from business owners. Facebook and Twitter may have a broader reach, but some owners are finding that Pinterest and Instagram help them connect [...]

NAIC Elects 2014 Officers

{December 23rd, 2013} by NAIC

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Dec. 18, 2013) —Members of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) today elected its 2014 officers: President: North Dakota Insurance Commissioner Adam Hamm President-Elect: Montana State Auditor and Commissioner of Securities and Insurance Monica J. Lindeen Vice President: Pennsylvania Insurance Commissioner Michael F. Consedine Secretary-Treasurer: Kentucky Insurance Commissioner Sharon P. Clark The [...]

Life 2014 Revenue Growth Outlook Projected At 2.9%

{December 23rd, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

Financial analysts at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods project estimated median operating revenue growth for a group of 14 life carriers at 2.9 percent for 2014 due to stock market performance, rising interest rates, and higher sales of fixed annuities and basic life insurance. Estimated median operating revenue growth in 2014 is down slightly from revised [...]

How To Work Better With Couple Clients

{December 23rd, 2013} by Ann Marsh

Only 42% of couples who have advisors work with them jointly, according to a new Fidelity study — and that’s a problem, according to experts at the custodial operation. In the remaining 58% of couples, male partners manage the advisor relationship while their significant others don’t participate. “If wives don’t have that relationship, one on [...]

Hefty tax bills could lurk in failed life insurance policies

{December 23rd, 2013} by Darla Mercado

Investors who surrender or let policies lapse risk big tax bills for so-called phantom income The failure of a life insurance policy is bad enough. But the situation instantly goes from bad to worse if there are loans against the policy — a hefty tax bill could be waiting in the wings. In-force life insurance [...]

Harbinger Group Makes Another Annuity Move

{December 23rd, 2013} by Linda Koco

Harbinger Group has made still another foray into the annuity business. The publicly held company’s latest deal is an annuity reinsurance treaty closed with Bankers Life. According to the treaty, Bankers Life will cede approximately $160 million of its annuity business to Front Street Re (Cayman) Ltd., a Harbinger subsidiary that focuses on life and [...]

National Life Group Expands Presence In Retirement Market

{December 23rd, 2013} by N/A

Montpelier, Vermont – National Life Group today announced that it will increase emphasis on marketing 457(b) plan solutions. For decades, National Life Group, through its member companies, has had a proven track record in providing retirement solutions in the 403(b) and 457(b) markets. This new initiative will leverage their broad experience and expertise to serve [...]


5 tax breaks for charitable giving

{December 23rd, 2013} by Christina Nelson

As the year wraps up, some tax breaks for charitable giving will cease as well. These tips, complements of the Internal Revenue Service, will help keep your clients’ year-end donations in proper shape for a smooth tax season ahead. Click here to read…


The 5 biggest social media lessons from 2013

{December 23rd, 2013} by Bloomberg News

2013 was an important year for social media, and via BloombergNews, here are five of the biggest lessons the financial community learned from social media in the past year. Click here to read… (Source: Bloomberg News) 


In 2014, carrot and stick for advisers at Wells Fargo

{December 23rd, 2013} by Trevor Hunnicutt

Wirehouse will require more revenue, set new targets but give advisers more ways to top the hurdle Wells Fargo & Co.’s largest group of financial advisers will have to generate more revenue or meet new performance targets in 2014 in order to pocket the same cut of revenue they earned this year. But the third-largest [...]


O&M launches annuity comparison tool

{December 23rd, 2013} by Emma Ann Hughes

O&M adds annuity comparison tool to both Pensions Profiler and O&M Profiler. The comparisons are included free of charge to users running the latest version of those systems in conjunction with their Assureweb account. O&M Profiler makes multiple requests via Assureweb for different annuity shapes. As the results are delivered, they are plotted graphically to [...]

Financial planning not among most New Year’s resolutions

{December 20th, 2013} by Warren S. Hersch

Only 16 percent of Americans say they intend to include financial planning in their New Year’s resolutions for 2014. That’s less than half of the 33 percent who said they would make financial planning a high priority when making resolutions in 2009, according to a new survey from Allianz Life. Nearly half (49 percent) of [...]