We would love to hear from you. Click on the ‘Contact Us’ link to the right and choose your favorite way to reach-out!


media/speaking contact

Jamie Johnson

business contact

Victoria Peterson

Contact Us


Close [x]

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 […]

4 tech gifts for insurance agents. And one not-so-techie

{December 20th, 2013} by Sam Melton

GeekTechMarketing.com recently revealed that 35.8 percent of people surveyed put electronic gifts atop their wish lists. That’s better than jewelry, home décor and sporting goods ranked. It can’t be just any tech gift. Click here to read…

Life insurance: 6 things to expect in 2014

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

For life insurance professionals who have long had difficulty selling interest rate-sensitive insurance products because of abysmally low yields, 2014 should bring welcome relief. Interest rates are due to rise — and stay on an upward path through 2018. Click here to read…

Annuities: 5 things to expect in 2014

{December 20th, 2013} by Maria Wood

Will fixed indexed annuities continue to be the rock stars of the annuity world? Has private equity’s appetite for fixed annuities waned? Will the Glenn Neasham case ever be over? Click here to read…

2013 annuity sales: Year in review

{December 20th, 2013} by Nichole Morford

There’s no denying that it’s been an impressive year for annuity sales. Industry-wide, the product is at its highest sales peak in two years, with especially notable growth seen in fixed annuities and deferred income annuities. Cathy Weatherford, president and CEO of the Insured Retirement Institute, said this after reviewing Q3 figures: “Strong sales were […]

ING U.S., Harbinger trumpet reinsurance deals

{December 20th, 2013} by Maria Wood

With so much light being beamed on captive reinsurers – the so-called shadow insurance industry – of late, perhaps it was not too surprising that ING U.S. and Harbinger Group Inc. (HGI) announced major reinsurance deals yesterday that captured headlines. In the case of ING U.S., it involves shifting their offshore reinsurance subsidiary, Security Life […]


Are you dedicated to promoting the understanding of fixed annuities through the education? Director wanted.

{December 20th, 2013} by Sheryl J. Moore

Submitted by: Kim O’Brien, President & CEO kim@nafa.com JOB DESCRIPTION – Education CONSULTANT TITLE:  Director of Education LOCATION: Phoenix, Arizona at an office site to be determined TYPE: Contracted Consultant GENERAL DESCRIPTION: The position is responsible for strengthening relationships with current NAFA members through educational initiatives: including constructing and maintaining the NAFA web content and presence; directing the […]

NAIC’s new leader welcomes major issues, won’t look back

{December 20th, 2013} by Elizabeth Festa

Insurance Commissioner Adam Hamm of North Dakota will be leading the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) in 2014 with a focus on what’s in front of him, he says, not what’s in the “rear-view mirror.” Joining Hamm in leadership will be Commissioner Sharon Clark of Kentucky as secretary-treasurer. Julie Mix McPeak of Tennessee and Wayne […]

Falcone Reinsurer to Take on $160 Million of Annuities

{December 19th, 2013} by Zachary Tracer

Front Street Re, the reinsurer controlled by Philip Falcone’s Harbinger Group (HRG) Inc., is expanding in annuities with its first transaction that doesn’t involve an affiliated company. Front Street is taking on $160 million of the retirement contracts from Bankers Life Insurance Co., according to a statement today from New York-based Harbinger Group. The transaction […]

NAIC Panel Considers Defining Some Captives as Multistate Insurers

{December 19th, 2013} by Thomas Harmon

WASHINGTON – A National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ panel is considering the possibility of treating a small segment of the captive and special purpose vehicle market used by some life insurers in the same manner as multistate insurers for accreditation purposes. The action has created concern among captives insurance officials in Delaware, one of the […]

Feds, workers agree: Guaranteed income vital in retirement

{December 19th, 2013} by Maria Wood

At least American workers and the federal government can agree on one thing: Having guaranteed income in retirement is vital. A recent survey by LIMRA and a report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) concur on that point. When polled by LIMRA, eight in 10 U.S. workers favor employers providing direction on how to covert […]

Annuity Industry Report Sees More Favorable Environment Ahead

{December 18th, 2013} by Annuity News

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) today released its state of the industry report identifying opportunities ahead in 2014. While interest rates remain historically low, IRI sees macroeconomic headwinds easing after rates bounced in 2013.  As a result, annuity sales stabilized during the past year, and with continued product innovation and ongoing consumer […]

Commissioners Back Leonardi Corporate Governance Idea, While Opponents Cite Flawed Process

{December 18th, 2013} by Thomas Harman

WASHINGTON – Commissioners watching the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ executive committee’s controversial vote rejecting having a consultant examine the NAIC’s corporate governance practices said they may still support the idea, while one who voted against it said he agreed with the motion in principle but differed on the process. The panel’s vote rejecting the […]

Men 58 Percent More Likely to Drive Financial Advisor Relationships

{December 18th, 2013} by Business Wire

Fidelity unveils “Financial Compatibility Quiz” to help advisors facilitate conversations and create more balanced involvement for couples in their financial planning December 18, 2013- BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Fidelity Investments® has released new insights from its 2013 Couples Retirement Study on the retirement expectations and preparedness of couples who work with financial advisors. The study uncovered a dynamic […]

Industry, NAIC Official Criticize IAIS Time Line for Testing Global Capital Standard

{December 17th, 2013} by Jeff Jeffrey

WASHINGTON – Insurance industry representatives and experts for the National Association of Insurance Commissioners were united in their opposition to the time line laid out by international regulators for the creation of a global capital standard, as well as the one for proposed changes to the way insurance contracts are accounted for, during a committee […]

Industry, Regulators at Odds Over NAIC Corporate Governance Model Law

{December 17th, 2013} by Thomas Harman

WASHINGTON – Insurance industry trade groups stand firmly against state regulators’ plans for a new corporate governance model law, saying that a guidance manual regulators seek as a basis for making adjustments to regulations is completely unacceptable. The discussions took place in a corporate governance working group at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners Fall […]

NAIC Panel Battles over Interim Plan to Keep Triple-X, AXXX Life Reserves Intact

{December 17th, 2013} by Thomas Harman

WASHINGTON – The ultimate fate of whether two reserving tools used by some life insurers should be eliminated from use continues to be the subject of vigorous debate among some state regulators who are pushing the concept and life insurers — as well as some state regulators — who believe the controversial tools can still […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Aegon N.V.’s U.S. and Canadian Subsidiaries

{December 17th, 2013} by Business Wire

OLDWICK, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “aa-” of the U.S. life/health subsidiaries of Aegon N.V. (Aegon) (Netherlands) (NYSE:AEG). Aegon’s U.S. life/health companies are collectively referred to as Aegon USA Group (Aegon USA). In addition, A.M. Best has affirmed the debt […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of CUNA Mutual Financial Group, Inc.’s Life Subsidiaries

{December 17th, 2013} by Business Wire

OLDWICK, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the financial strength ratings (FSR)  of A (Excellent) and issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “a” of CMFG  Life Insurance Company (CMFG Life) and MEMBERS Life  Insurance Company (MLIC), a life/annuity subsidiary, as well as the  following property/casualty subsidiaries: CUMIS Insurance Society,  Inc., its wholly owned subsidiary, CUMIS […]

Charges of NAIC corporate governance problems erupt

{December 17th, 2013} by Elizabeth Festa

[Washington] — The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Executive Committee meeting erupted into a biting referendum on the NAIC itself Monday, with Connecticut Insurance Commissioner Tom Leonardi motioning to hire an outside firm to conduct a corporate governance review. Leonardi would like the review to address a variety of so-called poor decisions, some by […]

The absolute end-of-year retirement advisor checklist

{December 17th, 2013} by Dan Berman

There are so many to-do lists as the year comes to a close that it might be easy to overlook the steps you need to take to make sure your client’s retirement plans are on track. Making mistakes could cost them thousands of dollars and you, their future business. From deciding when it’s best for […]

Rising debt keeps older Americans working longer

{December 17th, 2013} by Maria Wood

Older Americans now shoulder a heavier debt burden, and it’s forcing them to stay in the labor force longer and delay claiming of Social Security. So found a research paper released by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College. The impetus of the study, written by Barbara A. Butrica and Nadia S. Karamcheva, was […]

Protective Life Exec Criticizes Industry’s Commoditization

{December 17th, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

The chief executive officer of one of the nation’s most respected life insurance companies decried the state of the industry. John D. Johns, president, chairman and chief executive officer of Protective Life, said the industry had become commoditized and made it difficult for many consumers to buy life insurance and related products. The comments, coming […]

Fidelity & Guaranty Life Insurance launches IPO

{December 16th, 2013} by Victor Epstein

  Fidelity & Guaranty Life Insurance Company began its life Friday as a publicly traded company under the FGL ticker. The Des Moines-based firm, which relocated its headquarters from Baltimore last month, priced an initial public offering of 9.75 million shares Thursday at $17 each. They began trading this morning on the New York Stock […]

Almost half of financial advisors don’t have retirement plans

{December 16th, 2013} by Paula Aven Gladych

Financial advisors spend their time helping others prepare for retirement, but they are notorious about not planning for their own futures, according to a study of 2,400 financial professionals by the Financial Planning Association Research & Practice Institute. The study found that half of financial advisors don’t have a written business plan and 46 percent […]

Relax, clients don’t want to hear from you via Twitter

{December 16th, 2013} by Liz Skinner

New report finds the high-net-worth clients would rather communicate the old-fashioned way. All the proclamations that financial advisers have to master social media so that they can communicate with clients and prospects appear to have been wrong, or at least premature. Investors — whether they have $100,000 to invest or more than $2 million — […]

Des Moines’ newest insurer hits a high note with opening offering

{December 16th, 2013} by Victor Epstein

Shares of the Fidelity & Guaranty Life Insurance Co., Des Moines’ newest insurer, rose $1.86 each, or 11 percent, on their first day of trading as a publicly traded company. The stock, which trades under the FGL ticker, closed at $18.86 a share after opening the day at $17 on the New York Stock Exchange. […]

The FIO Report: What it says about annuities

{December 16th, 2013} by Maria Wood

The U.S. Treasury’s Federal Insurance Office (FIO) long-awaited report on how to modernize the industry was finally released last week, all 70-some pages of it. For those in the annuity industry, the pertinent section begins on page 51, although much of what it says will sound familiar. On that page and the next, the FIO […]

Satisfaction with life insurers up 2.5 percent in 2013

{December 16th, 2013} by Warren S. Hersch

A key indicator of customer satisfaction with the life insurance sector edged up in the third quarter, new research shows. The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), an independent benchmark of customer satisfaction, is based on a survey of 70,000 customers about the products and services they use the most. The research results are used to […]

Insurers need to become more digitally sophisticated

{December 16th, 2013} by Warren S. Hersch

To compete successfully in the year ahead, life insurers must become more customer-centric, adopt digital technologies and streamline operations. They also need to invest in enterprise data excellence, improve capital efficiency and prepare for regulatory and accounting changes. The source of this to-do list: Ernst & Young, which details in a new report its recommendations […]

4 opportunities for life insurance agents in 2014

{December 16th, 2013} by Kenneth A. Shapiro

Successful producers know from experience that there are no easy ways to close a life insurance sale. That takes time and persistent effort.  These are the producers who also know that the rewards are more than worth it. Click here to read…

How adviser salaries stack up to other professions

{December 16th, 2013} by Matt Sirinides and Andrew Leigh. Sources: InvestmentNews/Moss Adams 2013 Compensation & Staffing Study and Salary.com

  How adviser pay stacks up We compared data from the recent InvestmentNews/Moss Adams 2013 Compensation & Staffing Study, which collected compensation information from over 400 firms for over 2,000 positions, against data gathered from Salary.com to see how adviser compensation compares against other seasoned professionals in the workforce today. Here is how they stacked […]

NAIC Applauds FIO’s State-Based Support

{December 16th, 2013} by Senator Ben Nelson, NAIC Chief Executive Officer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE NAIC STATEMENTS ON FIO MODERNIZATION REPORT WASHINGTON, D.C. (Dec. 12, 2013) —The following are statements from NAIC President and Louisiana Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon and NAIC CEO Senator Ben Nelson on the Federal Insurance Office Modernization Report: We are pleased the Treasury Department continues to embrace the state-based system of insurance regulation. […]

Aviva Plans To Shift Sales Jobs To Iowa

{December 16th, 2013} by Megan Hart; megan.hart@cjonline.com

The parent company of Aviva announced Friday that 24 sales jobs will move from Topeka to West Des Moines, Iowa. Steve Carlson, public relations manager forAthene USA, confirmed the Topeka sales operations would be relocated. Most of the Topeka sales employees will have the option to relocate to Iowa, he said. Aviva has an office […]

American General Offers Chronic Illness Rider To UL Policy

{December 13th, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

American General has added a rider to its guaranteed universal life (GUL) policy that allows policyholders diagnosed with chronic illness to access the policy’s death benefit while they are still alive. The rider, branded as Accelerated Access Solution, is available on American General’s Secure Lifetime GUL II, the company said. “This new accelerated benefit rider […]

Allstate And ING Shift To Fixed Annuity Allies

{December 13th, 2013} by Linda Koco

According to a new strategic alliance announced yesterday, Allstate Financial will start selling fixed annuities manufactured and underwritten by ING U.S., effective in January. The arrangement promises to rejigger the fixed annuity business, as ING seeks to beef up sales via Allstate’s captive agents while independent agency players assess possible impact and craft competitive strategy. […]

Fidelity & Guaranty Life Expects to Raise Nearly $200 Million in IPO

{December 13th, 2013} by Fran Matso Lysiak

DES MOINES, Iowa  – Fidelity & Guaranty Life, a unit of Harbinger Group Inc., has started an initial public offering of 9.75 million shares of common stock under a Form S-1 registration statement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The IPO’s price is expected to be between $17 and $19 a share, and the […]

6 lessons from a master

{December 13th, 2013} by Sandy Schussel

Mehdi Fakharzadeh is one of the most successful insurance agents in history. At 92, he is still taking on and servicing clients. Fakharzadeh achieved his remarkable success despite beginning his career with a severely limited grasp of the English language and American customs. Click here to read…

Fixed Annuity Education at the Forefront of NAFA’s 15th Anniversary Accomplishments

{December 13th, 2013} by AnnuityOutlook

Milwaukee, WI (December 12, 2013) – NAFA, the National Association for Fixed Annuities, has celebrated fifteen years of being a driving force in the fixed annuity industry and ensuring their success and importance in the retirement planning marketplace. Originally founded in 1998, NAFA is a trade association exclusively dedicated to educating regulators, legislators, journalists, and […]

Federal Regulation of Insurance May Be Necessary if States Do Not Modernize, Warns Long-Overdue FIO Report

{December 13th, 2013} by Jeff Jeffrey

WASHINGTON – The Federal Insurance Office’s much-anticipated report warns that federal regulation of the insurance industry may be necessary if states do not take appropriate steps to modernize their regulatory systems. The report, released Dec. 12, does not call for a broad federal role in the regulation of insurance, noting many of the areas where […]

Life Insurers Praise Passage of Industry-Friendly Version of Volcker Rule

{December 12th, 2013} by Jeff Jeffrey

WASHINGTON – Five federal agencies voted Dec. 10 to approve the Volcker rule, which sets limits on financial institution investments. The life insurance industry has come out in support of the version of the Volcker rule adopted because it largely leaves investments made by insurers untouched. The rule, a key component of the Dodd-Frank financial […]

Insurance regulation: 5 things to watch in 2014

{December 11th, 2013} by Nancy Lininger

As I attempt to look at what’s on the 2014 horizon for the insurance industry in terms of regulation, compliance and other best practices, I can’t overcome the feeling of déjà vu. Or perhaps I am just repeating myself. Many of the topics here — a fiduciary standard, industry reorganization, arbitration methods — are not […]

Mixed Messages On Low Interest Rates?

{December 11th, 2013} by Linda Koco

The fortunes of the fixed annuity business are so closely tied to the movement of interest rates that fixed annuity professionals follow rate developments closely. Right now, some professionals might be getting cross-eyed, due to what seems to be mixed messages in this area. On one the hand, many carriers that issue fixed annuities are […]

IAs As An Alternative To Bonds

{December 11th, 2013} by Chris McDonald

The old standby for retirement income – the traditional bond-equity mix – could have a new contender: the indexed annuity (IA) with guaranteed minimum income benefits rider. With inflation rising, interest rates ticking up and equities perched at all-time highs (and a possible correction looming), a portfolio that swaps bonds for IAs could be a […]

Beacon CEO: 3Q US Sales of Fixed Annuities Propelled by Widening Credit Spreads

{December 11th, 2013} by Fran Matso Lysiak

EVANSTON, Ill.  – The U.S. fixed annuity industry experienced one of its strongest periods during the third quarter of this year as credit spreads widened and long-term rates on Treasuries rose, which helped propel sales, according to the chief executive officer of Beacon Research. Total third-quarter 2013 sales of fixed annuities, including indexed, rose to […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Principal Financial Group, Inc. and Its Subsidiaries

{December 11th, 2013} by Best's News Service

OLDWICK, N.J. – A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “aa-” of Principal Life Insurance Company and Principal National Life Insurance Company (together referred to as Principal Life). Both are life insurance operating companies of Principal Financial Group, Inc. (PFG) [NYSE: PFG] and […]

Lincoln Nat’l settles multistate action for $12.6M

{December 11th, 2013} by Elizabeth Festa

Lincoln Financial Group companies are the latest insurer to come under the widening umbrella of the Social Security Administration’s Death Master File (DMF) settlements with state insurance departments, this time with a $12.6 million claim agreement with Lincoln National Life Insurance Co. and various life and annuity affiliates. The latest agreement was the result of […]

Living with longevity

{December 11th, 2013} by Michael K. Stanley

Since the global financial crisis of 2007/2008 there has been much academic debate about how Americans will retire and the repercussions that certain modifications in retirement planning will have on the industry and the country as a whole. It seems the financial crisis and the havoc it wreaked on peoples’ retirement savings across the country […]

Social-media lingo, Part 1- 5

{December 11th, 2013} by Amy McIlwain

Sometimes the social-media world can feel like a whole other planet,  with its own unique etiquette, customs and language. If you’re an advisor just beginning to explore this strange new landscape — or an old pro — you need to be familiar with certain words and phrases. Enter the Financial Social Media dictionary, a list […]

Clarity On Private Equity; Low Interest Rates To Spur Deals

{December 11th, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

Excess capital among annuity insurers, low organic growth and financing rates, louder activist shareholders and the narrowing of bid-ask spreads means it’s likely the market will see more private equity deals, an expert said. Perhaps most important in greasing the deal trend, however, is the “additional clarity” offered by the New York Financial Services Superintendent […]

AIG To Create 230 Jobs In N.C.

{December 11th, 2013} by Targeted News Service

RALEIGH, N.C.,Dec. 10 — Gov. Pat McCrory, R-N.C., issued the following news release: Governor Pat McCrory and North Carolina Commerce Secretary Sharon Decker announced today thatAmerican International Group (AIG) will establish a technology center inMecklenburg County. The company plans to create 230 new jobs inNorth Carolina by the end of 2017 and invest more than$5.5 […]

Boomers could forever redefine retirement

{December 11th, 2013} by Peter J. "Coach Pete" D/Arruda

Article added by Peter J. “Coach Pete”  D’Arruda on December 10, 2013 “The boomers’ biggest impact will be on eliminating the term ‘retirement’ and inventing a new stage of life…the new career arc.”  – Rosabeth Moss Kanter  I remember picking up a copy of USA Today a couple of years ago and seeing the headline: […]

Prudential’s Strangfeld: Is the CEO’s pay too high?

{December 10th, 2013} by Warren S. Hersch

If one judges CEO pay solely on the basis of total compensation reported in proxy statements, then the pay package fo Prudential Financial CEO John Strangfed, the top earner in NU’s inaugural November 2013 feature on CEO compensation, clearly is a cut above the rest. But is it too much? Click here to read…

Fixed, indexed annuities post big gains in Q3

{December 10th, 2013} by Warren S. Hersch

After achieving sizable gains through the bank channel in the second quarter, the products are on track to achieve record gains for all of 2013. So notes Beacon Research in its latest quarterly industry premium survey. The report reveals that indexed annuity sales hit a record high of $10.1 billion in the third quarter, up […]

Industry wary of direction on FASB insurance contracts

{December 10th, 2013} by Elizabeth Festa

Some investors and insurers are concerned that the Federal Reserve Board may be backing the wrong horse in insurance contract accounting standards while others representing U.S. and global interests are worried about fast-tracking convergence of these standards in pursuit of global capital standards. And you thought something called FASB Topic 834 would be boring. The […]


87 years in life insurance history

{December 10th, 2013} by Brian Anderson

After a full 87 years, this is the last stand-alone issue of Life Insurance Selling. Summit Professional Networks, publisher of Life Insurance Selling, has decided to merge the magazine with our sister publication, National Underwriter Life & Health, effective January 2014. (For more about the strategy behind this move, see my December column. ) Click […]

6 celebrities who made unfortunate life insurance decisions

{December 10th, 2013} by Vanessa De La Rosa

It’s easy to assume that the rich and famous have enough money to last multiple lifetimes, and that they have access to some of the best financial advice on the planet. But sometimes elite status, exorbitant amounts of wealth, and risky lifestyles can cause celebrities to either ignore the necessity of life insurance or fall […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Lincoln National Corporation and Its Key Subsidiaries

{December 10th, 2013} by A.M. Best Co.

OLDWICK, N.J., Nov 22, 2013 (BUSINESS WIRE) — A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “aa-” of the key life/health subsidiaries of Lincoln National Corporation (Lincoln) (headquartered in Radnor, PA) [NYSE: LNC], consisting of The Lincoln National Life Insurance Company and its wholly […]

Pair Of Minnesota-Based Giants Refresh, Launch New Products

{December 10th, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

Call it the battle of the Minnesota-based life insurance giants. Securian Financial Group, based in St. Paul, Minn., has refreshed one indexed universal life (UL) product, and launched three indexed UL insurance products and a term life insurance product for sale in the state of New York. In addition, the company has added three distribution […]

Life Industry Eyes Outcome of Dec. 10 Vote on Volcker Rule

{December 10th, 2013} by Jeff Jeffrey

WASHINGTON – Five federal agencies are set to vote Dec. 10 on whether to approve the Volcker rule, which would restrict financial institutions’ ability to make certain trades and investments. The vote is being watched closely by the life insurance industry because it could affect some investment strategies. The Volcker rule, named for former Federal […]

ING wins fixed-annuity deal as Allstate narrows focus

{December 9th, 2013} by Bloomberg News

ING U.S. Inc. will begin selling fixed annuities through Allstate Corp. agencies as the largest publicly traded U.S. auto and home insurer ceases to offer its own brand of the retirement products. The deal gives ING U.S. access to one of the biggest insurance customer bases in the country, while furthering a strategy by Allstate […]

Highland Capital Brokerage Names New Managing Principals

{December 9th, 2013} by N/A

(Birmingham, AL: December 5, 2013) – Highland Capital Brokerage announced today that it has hired new managing principals for its Philadelphia, PA, and Charlotte, NC, locations effective January 1, 2014. David R. Bernaus, CLU, ChFC, most recently with Nationwide Financial Services has been hired as Managing Principal at HCB Philadelphia. Walter L. Brown, most recently […]

Allstate, ING U.S. Announce Strategic Alliance On Annuities

{December 9th, 2013} by PR Newswire Association LLC

NORTHBROOK, Ill. and NEW YORK,Dec. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ –The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) and ING U.S. (NYSE: VOYA) today announced a strategic alliance that will enable Allstate to offer a full suite of fixed annuity product offerings issued by ING Companies to Allstate customers. The fixed annuity products are issued by ING USA Annuity and […]


4% rule stands the test of time

{December 9th, 2013} by Maria Wood

Conventional wisdom has long dictated that 4 percent is the most sustainable withdrawal rate from a retirement portfolio, one that enables the investor to not exhaust his savings. However, in recent years, some experts have questioned that long-held benchmark. Those in the 4 percent camp can take heart: A recent research paper from registered investment […]

Batons and Bullets: Protocol for insurance ‘battles’ developing

{December 9th, 2013} by Elizabeth Festa

Some state insurance department staff may wear pocket protectors. Others, bullet proof vests. Insurance department staff investigators clearly have a perilous job at times. Click here to read…

Where is social media marketing headed in 2014?

{December 9th, 2013} by Louisa Manalastas

How important is social for insurance? According to Accenture Insurance’s guide, “Four steps to mastering a social media strategy in insurance” customer acquisition is the number one benefit of social marketing. While only 33 percent in the banking and insurance industry say that they have acquired customers through social media, according to Business Journal, there […]

Put Down the Device and Read!

{December 9th, 2013} by Larry Barton

s a professor serving our industry, I’m often surprised – although I shouldn’t be – that so many well-intentioned and smart agents will spend so many hours each day reading company and client emails that they lose touch with important economic and investment trends around them. Each person has their own preference about knowledge sources […]

Time is Ticking on IRA-Charity Rollovers

{December 9th, 2013} by Patti S. Spencer

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) extended the qualified charitable distribution (QCD) provisions through Dec. 31, 2013. In general, distributions from individual retirement accounts (IRAs) must be included in gross income in the year in which distribution occurs, and income taxes must be paid on the taxable portion. A qualified charitable distribution (“QCD” […]

U.S. Insurance Broker Sector Outlook Positive for 2014: Fitch

{December 9th, 2013} by Insurance Journal

Revenue and earnings growth for U.S. insurance brokers in 2014 is expected to improve modestly over 2013, according to a report by Fitch Ratings. Fitch issued a stable rating outlook and positive sector outlook for the insurance broker market. Fitch said its stable rating outlook reflects its analysts’ expectation that “prospective operating performance and balance […]

Retirement savings: 3% is the new 4%

{December 9th, 2013} by Robert Powell

New rule of thumb on nest egg withdrawals takes more metrics into account, says new paper It’s all relative. How much retirees can safely withdraw from their retirement account each year is a mostly a function of current stock values and interest rates, which tend to predict near-term returns. And when stock market valuations are […]

Insurance agent fined for taking clients to football game

{December 9th, 2013} by IFAwebnews Staff

North Dakota insurance agent Gary L. Ihry was fined $57,500 by state insurance regulators after treating 21 clients to a Minnesota Vikings game and holding two annual customer appreciation dinners for hundreds of clients. Ihry is part owner of Ihry Insurance Agency, which has eight offices in North Dakota and one in Minnesota. He is […]

Which Advsor Group is Growing Fastest?

{December 9th, 2013} by Ann Marsh

The overall advisor population has dropped by 32,000 over the past nine years, a new study finds — and only one category of advisors is expanding to fill the gap. Between 2004 and 2012, the number of RIAs grew steadily at an annualized rate of 8%, while other advisory channels have contracted by more than […]

Outlook upgraded for U.S. life insurance industry

{December 6th, 2013} by Emily Holbrook

It’s been a long, slow road, but finally positive news reports are surfacing regarding the state of the U.S. life insurance industry. Recent evidence of a rebound can be find in the action Moody’s has taken, upgrading its outlook on the industry from negative to stable. Moody’s gives the following reasons for the optimistic outlook: […]

SAFE Bill Would Use Annuities to Secure Public Employee Pensions

{December 6th, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

he defined benefit retirement model, which entered decline more than 20 years ago, may benefit from a reincarnation of sorts in the Secure Annuities for Employee Retirement (SAFE) Act of 2013 making the rounds in Congress. The SAFE Act would offer public employees a new type of defined benefit retirement plan built on fixed annuities. […]

Outlook 2014

{December 6th, 2013} by Steven A. Morelli

Feel the relief? It’s the collective sigh from the insurance industry as it survives a historic economic storm and looks to smoother sailing ahead. But that does not mean agents and advisors should get too comfortable. This is not a case of them settling back into their deck chairs and enjoying the ride. This is […]

Lincoln Financial Exec: As Pensions Disappear, Annuities Offer Attractive Income Stream

{December 6th, 2013} by Fran Matso Lysiak

OLDWICK, N.J. – Consumers looking for a guaranteed income in retirement are helping bump up the sales of annuities, according to Brian Kroll, senior vice president at Lincoln Financial in charge of the annuity solutions group. Q: Total third-quarter sales of annuities rose 9% to $59.4 billion, the largest year-over-year growth since the second quarter […]


Fixed annuity sales skyrocket

{December 6th, 2013} by Emily Holbrook

The annuity industry received some much-welcomed news: Sales are surging. According to a report issued today by the Insured Retirement Institute, industry-wide annuity sales reached $57.5 billion during the third quarter of 2013, a 5.5 percent increase from the previous quarter and an 8.7 percent increase from third quarter 2012. Fixed annuity sales, specifically, rose […]

Survey identifies lack of intergenerational planning

{December 6th, 2013} by Warren S. Hersch

Countless studies have demonstrated that individuals who diligently plan for their retirement are better off financially, and feel more confident about their retirement prospects, than those who don’t. As the saying goes, “people don’t plan to fail; they fail to plan.” So a key finding of a new study from Hearts & Wallets LLC should […]

Want Better Clients? Get a Plan!

{December 5th, 2013} by Brent Eugenides

                                  We all know that, for most clients, insurance is an intangible item. It’s an emotional purchase. It’s a combination of fear and love wrapped up into a piece of paper (actually a big thick contract that virtually no one reads), which they hope works out when the time comes. As a new life insurance […]

Creating a Cohesive Social Presence: Be the Life of Each Party

{December 5th, 2013} by Amy McIlwain

The holiday season is officially in full swing, which means shopping, detailed planning and a full agenda of holiday parties. When introducing financial advisors to social media, my favorite metaphor to help illustrate the differences between one social network and another is that of different social settings.  If you’ve ever listened to one of my […]

LIMRA: Individual Life Premium Remains Level In 3Q

{December 5th, 2013} by N/A

WINDSOR, Conn., Dec. 5, 2013 — Total third quarter individual life insurance new annualized premium remained level with the same period of 2012, according to LIMRA’s third quarter 2013 individual life insurance sales survey. In the first nine months of 2013, individual life insurance premium improved 4 percent. “While every other product line experienced positive […]

Zurich May Sell Some Operations

{December 5th, 2013} by Robert O'Connor, London editor: Robert.OConnor@ambest.com)

Zurich Insurance Group Ltd., which was shaken this year by the apparent suicide of its chief financial officer and the abrupt resignation of its chairman, has unveiled a three-year strategic plan that puts emphasis on its role as a “global and composite insurer.” In a presentation to investors, the multiline insurer said it may dispose […]

Women Place Greater Emphasis On Trust

{December 5th, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

Women are more likely than men to trust a financial advisor, and are also more open to changing their savings and spending habits after receiving advice than men are, according to the pension fund giant Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association-College Retirement Equities Fund (TIAA-CREF). In a recent survey, TIAA-CREF found that 30 percent of women […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company and FBL Financial Group Inc.

{December 5th, 2013} by Best's News Service

OLDWICK, N.J. – A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the financial strength rating of A- (Excellent) and issuer credit rating (ICR) of “a-” of Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company (FB Life). Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the ICR of “bbb-” of FBL Financial Group Inc. (FFG) [NYSE: FFG], the parent of FB Life. The outlook for […]


What will save retirement?

{December 4th, 2013} by Emily Holbrook

Will the recent rebound in the stock market and housing prices be enough to save the nest eggs of those in the workforce? According to the Center for Retirement Research (CRR) at Boston College, it may help, but not very much. Individuals will still need to work longer and save more.   Click here to read…


IRA owners don’t play around

{December 4th, 2013} by Emily Holbrook

Individual Retirement Account (IRA) owners handle their nest eggs with care. In fact, they have detailed strategies that include such things as setting aside emergency funds, developing a retirement income plan, reviewing insurance policies, determining retirement expenses and determining when to take Social Security. That’s according to the Investment Company Insitutute’s new report, “The Role […]


The Bad Bunch: National Underwriter’s 2013 Rogue’s Gallery

{December 4th, 2013} by Emily Holbrook, Bill Coffin, Allison Bell, and Warren S. Hersch

The life and health insurance industry, as we’ve seen in 2013, has had its own share of general business problems, aside from any man-made issues such as acts of fraud or a failed website. Like an unsuspecting outlier out to harm an industry working for the physical and financial health of society, these Rogues — […]


Where’s The Holiday For Life Insurance?

{December 4th, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

The nation has emerged from the traditional long Thanksgiving weekend, the eight days of Hanukkah are winding to a close and Christmas decorations are going up. But all life insurance policies get is the equivalent of a big, fat “no, thanks.” See the envelope resting by the mantelpiece or beneath the tree? There’s a higher […]


New Entrants Steepen Competition In The Fixed Annuities Marketplace

{December 4th, 2013} by Rich Lane

More new entrants are tapping into the financial potential of the fixed annuities marketplace. As they make inroads into this industry, competition for customers is fiercer than ever. Advisors must provide educated product recommendations to their customers if they want a secure, long-term client base. The better understanding they have of the annuities marketplace, including […]


With markets on a tear, advisers see strong year for charitable giving

{December 4th, 2013} by Liz Skinner

Clients are donating more, but also seeking to make an impact with their gifts As the U.S. heads into its peak annual giving season, Americans feel bombarded with donation requests, but on the whole, they are digging deeper. Financial advisers said their clients this year are more confident about their financial future and are willing […]


‘Grey’ divorcees face retirement shortfall

{December 4th, 2013} by Maria Wood

“Grey” divorcees – those who divorce at age 50 or older – envision a rocky road on their way to a secure retirement. Many say they will work longer than planned and concede their savings post-divorce may not adequately fund their golden years. Those were the takeaways from a research project conducted by Investors Group, […]


Six Things Not To Say When Selling Insurance

{December 4th, 2013} by Liz Elfman

Selling insurance can be viewed as an art form, and each agent approaches it differently.  Plus, with constantly changing technology, regulatory shifts, and other social and economic pressures, agents may have to change their strategy depending on the situation.  Some consistencies still remain, however.  Our agents and forum members told us some of the things […]

Pacific Life Offers Financial Advisors a New and Innovative Option for Building Retirement Income: Pacific Income Advantage(SM)

{December 4th, 2013} by Marketwired

NEWPORT BEACH, CA–(Marketwired – Dec 3, 2013) –  Amid today’s economic  fluctuations, financial advisors want their clients to have every possible  advantage as they build retirement income. That’s why Pacific Life Insurance  Company has launched Pacific Income Advantage. This innovative, new addition to  Pacific Life’s diverse annuity product line combines the advantages of a  traditional […]

NAFA Response to Malcom Berko Article in Oklahoma

{December 3rd, 2013} by NAFA

Re: Malcom Berko 11/24/2013 “Steer clear of equity-indexed annuities” Dear Editor: We respect every person’s right express their opinion about financial and insurance products. And, while Mr. Berko is entitled to his opinion, he ISN’T entitled to altering facts to justify his opinion. Mr. Berko: EIAs are unregistered investments FACT: Indexed annuities are insurance products […]

Are Regulations Too Onerous For Advisors To Stay In Business?

{December 3rd, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

Whether it’s responding to urgent phone calls over Thanksgiving, or flying six hours cross-country to be with clients who have lost a spouse, there are few things a dedicated advisor would not do for a long-time customer. The extra hours cement strong relationships. But the time spent addressing regulations is another story. Regulations require attention […]


Annuities and Social Security: What retirees need to know

{December 3rd, 2013} by Charles K. Hirsch

For retirement planners, two of the most common concerns among clients  involve annuities and Social Security. We recently spoke with three top  producers about how they handle both topics. Here’s their advice.  Click here to read…

Families Don’t Discuss Financial Topics

{December 3rd, 2013} by Cyril Tuohy

A major new study by Merrill Lynch finds the majority of Americans age 50 or older unprepared for big family events, a situation made worse by family members’ reluctance to discuss financial topics. Big events that could potentially upset a family’s financial balance include an adult child moving back in with parents, the loss of […]


Driver in celebrity death crash was Merrill Lynch adviser

{December 3rd, 2013} by Trevor Hunnicutt

Roger W. Rodas was in actor Paul Walker’s car; firm “deeply saddened” by loss Many of the best financial advisers hope not just for proximity, but also lifelong kinship with the boldface names on their client lists. There may be no more striking example of how close those bonds can be than the circumstances that […]

Securian goes big in New York with new products, new distribution

{December 2nd, 2013} by IFAwebnews Staff

St. Paul, MN–In the past three months, Securian Financial Group launched four indexed universal life insurance products, a new term life product and added three distribution networks in the state of New York. Valmark, Waddell & Reed and Capital Financial Group joined Securian’s New York distribution in August. The new products include a refreshed version […]


4 ways insurance can protect your clients’ retirement funds

{December 2nd, 2013} by Kurt Fasen

With lingering economic uncertainty and rumblings about the future of Social Security, many Americans feel a continuing unease about their prospects for a secure retirement. This sentiment was aptly captured by ING U.S.’s Retirement Revealed study, in which nearly half (48 percent) of respondents — representing more than 4,000 adults ages 25 to 69 with […]

Say ‘No’ to Clients Who Are Behaviorally Different From You

{December 2nd, 2013} by Savita Iyer-Ahrestani

Taking on a client who is too different from yourself can be overly draining and not worth the rewar Because health and finance are arguably the two most important areas in a person’s life, finding a trusted financial planner is as vital as finding a trusted medical practitioner. “Technical expertise is a given in our […]