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Archive for June 2014

Moore elected to lead annuity trade group

{June 30th, 2014} by N/A

The Society for Annuity Facts and Education Inc. announced it has elected Sheryl Moore as its president. Moore, president and CEO of Moore Market Intelligence and Wink Inc. in Pleasant Hill, specializes in market research in the indexed annuity and indexed life insurance businesses. The organization also elected Lowell Aronoff, CEO of CANNEX Financial Exchanges […]

NAIC Poised to Hire Outside Contractor to Examine Own Corporate Governance Practices

{June 30th, 2014} by Tom Harmon

WASHINGTON – A National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ task force has voted to recommend an outside consultant be hired to examine the group’s corporate governance practices. The NAIC governance review task force made the recommendation in a June 27 vote, which must now meet with NAIC Executive Committee final approval when it meets next in […]

IRI: Send NARAB II to the President

{June 30th, 2014} by Warren S. Hersch

It’s high time that NARAB II be enacted. As LifeHealthPro contributor Arthur D. Postal noted in a June 20 article on the legislation, life insurance professionals spend an average of 29 hours per year complying with insurance licensing requirements, an additional 28 hours on insurance-specific education courses, plus an average more than $350 per year […]

US Supreme Court Denies Starr International’s Lawsuit Over AIG Bailout

{June 30th, 2014} by Jeff Jeffrey

WASHINGTON – Starr International Co.’s lawsuit against the federal government over the bailout given to American International Group Inc. during the financial crisis will not be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court. The justices denied Starr’s petition for a hearing in a brief note posted on the court’s website June 30. The justices did not […]

Survey flags continuing challenges for women in insurance

{June 30th, 2014} by Warren S. Hersch

According to a recent IICF survey of over 800 female members of the insurance industry, just over one quarter (26 percent) of female life insurance professionals believe the insurance industry is more embracing of women in leadership positions as compared to other business and professional services industries. The Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation discloses this finding […]

Re-imagining the insurance agent: Opinion

{June 30th, 2014} by Lynette Gil

When I say “working in insurance,” what is the first image that pops into your mind? Let’s be honest: For most people, those words usually bring up images of an adult, with a hat, a briefcase, an impeccable suit, knocking on a suburban house door, selling insurance. At least, that’s the image I saw, until […]

What FINRA’s top execs earn

{June 30th, 2014} by Melanie Waddell

Last year was a solid one for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority — and the top execs’ pay packages weren’t too shabby, either. Executives at FINRA earn significantly higher salaries than those at the Securities and Exchange Commission. “The folks at FINRA seem to be living large while constantly professing they need more money,” says […]

American National Launches New IUL Product

{June 30th, 2014} by Globe Newswire

GALVESTON, Texas, June 26, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) –American National Insurance Company announces a new product, Signature Indexed Universal Life Insurance (IUL) policy, available July 1, 2014. This innovative life product provides Death Benefit protection and three Indexed Crediting Strategies along with a fixed account strategy for clients to choose from. Signature IUL can provide the […]

Finances For Same-Sex Couples With Kids Mirror Traditional Families

{June 30th, 2014} by N/A

MINNEAPOLIS – June 25, 2014 – Despite the fact that they may be perceived as the most “untraditional” among all family types, same-sex couple families with kids are emerging leaders when it comes to success with their finances, according to the Allianz LoveFamilyMoney Study* of 4,500 Americans. When asked how financially secure they feel, almost […]

Tips For Advisors Seeking To Target Ethnic Markets

{June 30th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

Reaching ethnic markets requires financial advisors to approach African-American, Asian and Hispanic households using a different marketing lens. This week’s tips for how advisors might want to target their business come courtesy of George H. Walper Jr., president of the consulting firm Spectrem Group in Lake Forest, Ill. African-Americans are less confident than other ethnic […]

Insurers taking steps to prepare for higher interest rates

{June 30th, 2014} by Warren S. Hersch

More than 8 insurers are shortening the duration of their general account investment portfolios to prepare for rising interest rates, according to new research. Cerulli Associates discloses this finding in a new June 2014 report of “The Cerulli Edge-U.S. Monthly Product Trends.” The monthly publication helps investors track product rankings, assets, flows, developments and trends […]

Variable annuities a top source of customer complaints: FINRA

{June 30th, 2014} by Emily Holbrook

True, there has been a certain amount of de-risking in the world of variable annuities. But according to FINRA’s chief risk officer, Carlo di Florio, they remain one of the top products for customer complaints. The specific product in question: VAs that include “buffers and caps,” according to di Florio. FINRA is also watching other […]

Many in 40s, 50s are planning career moves

{June 30th, 2014} by Nanci Hellmich, USA TODAY

Many people who are approaching their last decade or two of work before retiring want to spend that time in a career with less pressure and more time to have a life. Almost a third (29%) of pre-retirees plan to change careers in the next five years, a new survey reveals. Their top reasons for […]

Framing annuities more attractively

{June 30th, 2014} by Daniel Williams

Wow, more good news on the annuity front. In an article by Bob Seawright, chief investment and information officer at Madison Avenue Securities, economists are cited in the great annuity debate. According to Seawright, “economists have recognized that retirees should convert far more of their assets into an income annuity at retirement than they do.” […]

OneAmerica Exec: Pending Retirement Services Acquisition Presents Appealing Unique Niche

{June 28th, 2014} by Fran Matso Lysiak

OLDWICK, N.J. – OneAmerica agreed to acquire City National Bank’s San Diego retirement services record-keeping business because it has a “unique niche” and some “unique capabilities” that appeal to OneAmerica from a distribution standpoint, according to Bill Yoerger, president, retirement services division of the OneAmerica companies. The business tends to have a niche with professional […]

Northwestern Mutual’s $2.7B Sale of Russell Investments Helps Avoid Enhanced Regulation, Equity Analyst Says

{June 27th, 2014} by Fran Matso Lysiak

MILWAUKEE – Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. has agreed to sell Russell Investments, its global asset-management subsidiary, to the London Stock Exchange Group plc for $2.7 billion. The move will help the mutual avoid potential enhanced regulation and more restrictive capital rules, according to an equity analyst. The Seattle-based Russell oversees nearly $260 billion in […]

Why So Many Forecasts Are Useless: Ritholtz

{June 27th, 2014} by Barry Ritholtz

If you work in finance, you will invariably come across an example of single-variable analysis. Almost daily, we see terrible examples of this sort of analytic error, rife with logical weakness, yet offered with the highest degree of certainty. The way this works is as follows: Some ominous data point will be shown, along with […]

Are private equity firms ‘tinkering’ with life carrier investments?: Blog

{June 27th, 2014} by Linda Koco

There is nothing like new information to challenge commonly held notions. Case in point is a new report on investment portfolios of life insurers acquired in private equity (PE) buyouts. Published by SNL Insurance, the report notes that a common critique of such deals is that the buyer will “tinker” with an acquired insurer’s investment […]

Ex-Insurance Agent Heads To Theft Trial

{June 27th, 2014} by The Associated Press

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — The attorney for a former Kansas insurance agent accused of stealing nearly $2 million from policyholders says the case is expected to go to trial. Kari Schmidt said Thursday that her client, Jason Matthew Pennington, has not reached a plea deal with federal prosecutors. He is charged with 47 counts that […]

Keep Things Straightforward With Gen X Women, Advisor Recommends

{June 27th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

Ameriprise Financial advisor Michelle Young has a few words of advice for other advisors looking to serve Generation X women: Keep it simple. The more advisors throw at their clients in terms of financial planning or investments, the more they risk turning off Gen X women — many of whom have careers, family and enough […]

6 best colleges for insurance majors

{June 27th, 2014} by Lynette Gil

As the Class of 2014 walked toward getting their diplomas, here at LifeHealthPro we thought it would be timely to investigate which college programs are leaders in life and health insurance undergraduate fields of study. Most of the colleges that we researched include the degree in insurance as part of their business school programs, which […]

A hunt to find the next generation of financial advisers

{June 27th, 2014} by Emily Holbrook

The well-documented graying of the insurance and financial services industry is creating a problem for Wall Street. As this New York Times article states, of the 315,000 advisers working in the United States, only 5 percent are younger than 30. Further, AIG Advisor Group found it had more advisers older than 80 than younger than […]

5 things senior clients wish their advisors knew

{June 27th, 2014} by Nichole Morford

 March 2014, more than 200 seniors responded to our survey about their likes, needs, financial concerns, career outlook and asset base. What followed was a detailed picture of this market, growing larger every day with the rapid aging of the baby boomers. Here’s a peek inside the collective mind of the senior market, complete with […]

12 odd BrokerCheck disclosures

{June 27th, 2014} by Mason Braswell

  As the debate over what and how much brokers need to disclose on Finra’s BrokerCheck rages on, here are 12 actual disclosures that are off the beaten track. The following examples come directly from BrokerCheck reports. CLICK HERE TO VIEW By Mason Braswell Additional reporting by Alessandra Malito and Minda Smiley    

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Society for Annuity Facts and Education (SAFE), Inc. Elects New Officers

{June 27th, 2014} by SAFE

Washington, DC (June 27, 2014) – The Society for Annuity Facts and Education, Inc. (SAFE) is proud to announce its newly-elected Officers. Sheryl J. Moore has been elected to the position of SAFE President; Lowell Aronoff has been elected to the recently-added position of SAFE Vice President.Both will serve in their positions through December 2015. […]

Do you know what the average insurance agent makes? You might be surprised

{June 27th, 2014} by Tim Sprinkle

Earlier this week, Business Insider posted a chart showing the average wage for just about every job in America. Based on publicly-available information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the chart ranked everything from anesthesiologists to fast food cooks, based on how much each profession pays. It was, suffice it to say, a very, very […]

Prospecting for victims

{June 27th, 2014} by Steve Morelli

Sales seminars involving meals are often targeted by regulators as insidious lures for annuity “victims.” In fact, a seminar is the first setting of a video produced by the California Department of Insurance warning seniors about annuity “scammers.” If you haven’t seen it already, it’s quite the treat. The actor playing the evil, shifty-eyed annuity […]

Time Is On Their Side (For Now), So Gen X Should Use It Wisely

{June 27th, 2014} by Rebekah Barsch

Less than half of Americans say they feel financially secure, according to Northwestern Mutual’s 2014 Planning and Progress Study. That instability can be particularly difficult for members of Generation X, many of whom are in the throes of juggling work and family responsibilities along with saving for retirement. Many have stopped dreaming of an enjoyable […]

The Producers Group To Hold A Free Women’s Professional Group University

{June 27th, 2014} by The Producers Group

Event includes presentations from major carrier representatives, unique sales ideas and introductions to new products. San Diego, CA – The Producers Group (TPG) will hold a free Women’s Professional Group (WPG) University on July 24th at the Doubletree by Hilton in Anaheim, California. “This WPG University is going to be an incredible opportunity for our […]

NAFA Forum Highlights Critical Issues

{June 27th, 2014} by PRWeb

Annuity Leaders Join Prominent Regulators and Elected Officials to Debate Proposed Annuity Regulation Washington, DC (PRWEB) June 27, 2014 As part of its promotion of June as National Annuity Awareness Month, NAFA, the National Association for Fixed Annuities, held its fourth annual Annuity Leadership Forum at the Liaison Capitol Hill June 11-13, 2014. The event […]

U.S. Insurance Regulators May Refuse to Apply Global Capital Rules: NAIC President-Elect Lindeen

{June 26th, 2014} by Huw Jones

The United States may refuse to apply new global capital rules in the world’s biggest insurance market because of the “breakneck speed” they are being pushed through, American regulators said on Monday. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), made up of state insurance regulators, said there was no proven need to bring in the […]

2014 Electronic communications compliance report: What you need to know as a financial advisor

{June 26th, 2014} by Amy McIlwain

Smarsh, a cloud-based archiving solution for financial advisors, recently released their annual Electronic Compliance Survey Report. In its fourth year, the Smarsh survey seeks to identify trends and concerns in financial services.This year’s results reinforce the shift in attitude toward an acceptance of more types of electronic messages (and the compliance ramifications). In 2013, failure […]

Illinois Agrees To Give Zurich $20.35 Million Tax Incentive

{June 26th, 2014} by Anna Marie Kukec Daily Herald Business

While Zurich North America prepares to break ground on today for its new headquarters inSchaumburg, state officials agreed to a tax incentive package valued at about $20.35 million for the company. The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and Gov.Pat Quinn worked with the insurance executives after the company received a proposed incentive package […]

You Could Live to 100: How to Plan for a Long Retirement

{June 26th, 2014} by Casey Dowd

  REUTERS They say there are only two certainties in life: death and taxes. But that doesn’t mean we have any control over the actual timing of our death, which makes retirement planning hard. Projecting your life expectancy is a critical part of executing a retirement plan as it determines how much you need in […]

OneAmerica Financial Partners to Acquire City National Bank’s San Diego-Based Retirement Services Business

{June 26th, 2014} by Fran Matso Lysiak

INDIANAPOLIS – OneAmerica Financial Partners has agreed to acquire City National Bank’s San Diego retirement services record-keeping business. Terms of the agreement weren’t disclosed. City National’s retirement business, with $6.5 billion in assets under administration, manages more than 240 plans with 40,000 participants. The bank is a subsidiary of City National Corp. (NYSE: CYN), which […]

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Top-notch coaching both in and out of the office

{June 26th, 2014} by Jamie Johnson

Wink’s VP, , is a top-notch coach both in and out of the office. Peterson coached the Grandview Little League Bomberettes; the Wink-sponsored softball team made up of girls, ages 13-16, from around the Des Moines metro area, this summer. The Bomberettes finished the season with a 16-20 record and Coach Peterson was given the opportunity to lead […]

OneAmerica To Acquire City National Bank’s Retirement Services Division

{June 26th, 2014} by N/A

INDIANAPOLIS (June 25, 2014) – OneAmerica® and City National Bank announced today that they have entered into an agreement whereby OneAmerica will acquire City National Bank’s San Diego-based retirement services recordkeeping business. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close later this year. At that time, the business will adopt […]

An employee dies and the company collects the insurance

{June 26th, 2014} by Lynette Gil

How would you feel if the company that you currently worked at took a life insurance policy on your behalf, but the beneficiary when you passed was not your family or your estate, instead it was the company’s pension plan? The word “uncomfortable” barely begins to cover how employees at the newspaper The Orange County […]

Northwestern Mutual Agrees To Sell Subsidiary For $2.7B

{June 26th, 2014} by Paul Gores, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

June 26–Northwestern Mutual said Thursday it is selling Seattle-based Russell Investments to the London Stock Exchange Group for$2.7 billion. The Milwaukee-based insurer acquired the asset management company — then called Frank Russell Co. — in 1999 for $1.2 billion. “The proceeds from the sale will cap off what has proven to be a good investment […]

LIMRA: Most Gen X, Y Americans are financially vulnerable

{June 26th, 2014} by LIMRA

A new LIMRA study found that 6 out of 10 Generation X and Y Americans say losing their income for 6 months due to accident or illness would have a significant or drastic impact on their families’ financial well-being. “Our study revealed that younger generations were more likely to feel the financial impact of income […]

Annuity Opportunity ‘Ripe’ In Three States

{June 26th, 2014} by Linda Koco

Some states are ripe for growth in retail annuity sales this year. Others have such competitive markets that potential for growth may be limited. Still others are humming along with annuity sales close to valued benchmarks. The question is: Which states have the most opportunity for annuity sales growth? Right now, three states — California, […]

Examiner Funding Denied, Fiduciary Rule Delayed

{June 26th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

For advocates of raising the standards of conduct for financial advisors, spring has been a cruel season indeed, but for opponents of the blanket fiduciary standards the delays this year feel very much like last year. Last week, a House panel stripped the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of $300 million in funds the agency […]

Lewiston insurance agent allegedly persuaded ill man to cash in life insurance policy

{June 26th, 2014} by Jackie Farwell, BDN Staff

The family of a chronically ill Auburn man who was unscrupulously persuaded into cashing in his life insurance policy will be repaid more than $160,000, the state insurance bureau announced Thursday. Paul E. Richard, a Lewiston insurance agent who represented American Equity, allegedly advised the man to surrender a $100,000 life insurance policy that the […]

What is an annuity? Consider it as a strategy to hedge longevity

{June 25th, 2014} by Jocelyn Black Hodes

If you’d retired, or were planning to, around 2008 you probably found yourself in big trouble. When the stock market crashed, many people saw their hard-earned retirement nest eggs lose 35 to 40% of their value in what seemed like a blink of the eye. Ouch. For those nearing retirement age, that meant a serious […]

Advisors Vexed On Annuities’ Fiduciary Risk

{June 25th, 2014} by Maureen Nevin Duffy

Workers of the baby boom population are painfully aware that if they lose their savings in another financial crisis, they won’t have enough working years left to earn it back before retirement. About 78% of respondents age 50 and older in one poll say retirement security has become a more important issue for them in […]

Pitching the perfect product: Indexed annuities meet GLWBs

{June 25th, 2014} by Robert Bloink, William H. Byrnes

While finding the most suitable products to meet a client’s retirement income goals is fundamental to developing an appropriate retirement planning strategy, discovering the most desirable mixture of product features can prove equally critical. In this vein, financial producers should take note that indexed annuity sales have gained steam in recent months—and new studies suggest […]

Which life insurance policy is right for your client?

{June 25th, 2014} by Stephan R. Leimberg

Life insurance is a complex amalgamation of legal, tax and economic elements. Basically, it is a unique wealth creation tool that assures the accumulation of a desired amount of liquid capital at death. Depending on the plan of insurance, it may also create more or less capital for lifetime needs. Click here to read…

Update: Wink CEO: Indexed Universal Life is ‘Toeing the Line’ for All Sales of Universal Life

{June 24th, 2014} by Fran Matso Lysiak

  PLEASANT HILL, Iowa – First-quarter 2014 sales of indexed universal life insurance in the United States rose to $330.3 million, up 3.6% from the same period a year ago, according to Wink Inc., a firm that tracks the data. The first quarter was off to a slow start as sales of individual life insurance […]

Allianz Life Is On A Tear With FIA Sales

{June 24th, 2014} by Linda Koco

Top-selling fixed index annuity (FIA) writer Allianz Life turned in some jaw-dropping sales numbers for first quarter. Its total FIA sales hit nearly $2.8 billion, up 142 percent from the $1.1 billion it reported for first quarter last year, according to Wink Inc. The company’s FIA market share is now 26 percent, up from nearly […]

Alan S. Lewis Case Timeline

{June 24th, 2014} by N/A

This is a timeline of the case against Alan S. Lewis, a former California agent who was charged with 29 felonies for annuity sales. 2002 Alan S. Lewis starts working with Family First Insurance Services, based in Woodland Hills with 11 regional offices in California. Family First and the company whose fixed index annuities it […]

California Program Pays to Prosecute Life and Annuity Agents

{June 24th, 2014} by Steven A. Morelli

Why does California seem to go after annuity agents so aggressively? That’s been a question often asked after two criminal prosecutions in cases that could have been insurance department matters. The state’s Life & Annuity Consumer Protection Program might be a factor. It is a Department of Insurance initiative that pays county district attorneys to […]

Measure Your Financial Literacy with This Basic Test

{June 24th, 2014} by Bill Coffin

FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, has published this handy five-question quiz to determine one’s basic level of financial literacy. Not surprisingly, most Americans would fare more poorly on this than they would like to think. And that’s depressing, really, when you consider that these questions really are not all that difficult. Any advisor would […]

Morningstar goes to trial in intellectual property lawsuit

{June 24th, 2014} by Joyce Hanson

  Business Logic Corp. alleges research firm illegally replicated its retirement managed accounts software A trial is scheduled to start July 7 in Chicago to determine if investment research firm Morningstar Inc. illegally replicated software owned by Business Logic Corp. Business Logic, a 401(k) managed accounts software company, is suing Morningstar for breach of contract […]

Will Google and Amazon offer one-click life insurance?

{June 24th, 2014} by Craig Gaitan

The future is closer than you think The life insurance industry has been steadily in tradition for years now. Over time, the industry has been relying on legacy systems and there have been very few changes in the distribution. Add to that a significant lack of new products, and we have an industry moving at […]

About 40 Under 40

{June 24th, 2014} by Christina Nelson, series/features editor

The idea behind this inaugural InvestmentNews 40 Under 40 project was to illuminate the future of the financial advice industry by finding the top young talent in the field and sharing their stories with readers. The innovative and magnanimous people we’ve found may cause you to see your own attitudes and routines with fresh eyes, […]

2014 Real Life Stories honorees announced by Life Happens

{June 24th, 2014} by N/A

Life Happens, formerly known as the nonprofit LIFE Foundation, on June 23 announced the winners of its annual Real Life Stories Client Recognition Program, which honors licensed insurance professionals for going beyond the call of duty for clients and their families. Now in its 19th year, the Real Life Stories program recognizes exemplary service and […]

Alert: SEC social-media update

{June 24th, 2014} by Amy McIlwain

  In an effort to keep up with the ever-evolving social-media world, the SEC recently released a social-media guidance update. And one of the biggest changes relates to the use of third-party review sites and testimonials. Third-party reviews. Click here to read…

AnnuityAdvantage Recognizes National Annuity Awareness Month with Eight Reasons to Consider Fixed Annuities

{June 24th, 2014} by PR Newswire Association LLC

MEDFORD, Ore., June 24, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — National Annuity Awareness Month is all about educating consumers. AnnuityAdvantage takes this aspect of its mission to heart; Founder Ken Nuss believes strongly that fixed annuities are the best and safest choice for retirement income security in uncertain times. The following are eight convincing arguments in his favor. […]

Rising Rates To Benefit New Annuity Market Entrants

{June 23rd, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

Noninsurers that have recently entered the annuity market are likely to stick around as they benefit from rising rates and apply their well-honed asset management skills, according to an analysis. Two factors have created an opening for this group that has muscled its way into annuities from outside the traditional life insurance market: the retreat […]

Advisers proceed with caution following inherited IRA ruling

{June 23rd, 2014} by Darla Mercado

Clients’ estate plans and individual retirement accounts are due for a review in light of a recent Supreme Court decision that places inherited IRAs into the clutches of creditors in the event of a bankruptcy. In the case of Clark v. Rameker, the Supreme Court decided unanimously on June 12 against Heidi Heffron-Clark and her […]

Women closing financial literacy gender gap

{June 23rd, 2014} by Mary Beth Franklin

  It may come as no surprise that women are better than men at asking for directions when they are lost — whether on a busy highway or the road to retirement. But it can still be a long, arduous journey. Women are approaching their finances more proactively and using financial wellness programs at work […]

Most Young Adults Would Suffer If Income Interrupted

{June 23rd, 2014} by N/A

WINDSOR, Conn., June 23, 2014 — A new LIMRA study found that 6 out of 10 Generation X and Y Americans say losing their income for 6 months due to accident or illness would have a significant or drastic impact on their families’ financial well-being. “Our study revealed that younger generations were more likely to […]

Voya Financial Expands Social Media Program Support for Affiliated Financial Advisors

{June 23rd, 2014} by Maggie Dietrich

WINDSOR, Conn., June 23, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), which has rebranded from ING U.S., announced today that the company’s registered broker-dealer, ING Financial Partners, has expanded its social media program and support resources for its network of affiliated financial advisors and registered representatives. The program is now available with single sign-on […]

BISA Names New Executive Director

{June 23rd, 2014} by Lee Conrad

The Bank Insurance & Securities Association named Jeff Hartney as executive director, effective July 7, according to a press release from the association. Hartney succeeds Jim McNeil, who is leaving after three years as the head of the association to take a leadership role at Information Inc., a content and news company that serves other […]

Partners Advantage Appoints Gary Eckebrecht Vice President of Advantage Sales

{June 23rd, 2014} by Peggy Porter

Riverside, CA (June 23, 2014) – Partners Advantage Insurance Services, LLC is pleased to announce the appointment of Gary E. Eckebrecht as VP of Sales for its Advantage Division. Eckebrecht will be taking leadership in many of the key areas headed by retiring Senior Vice President James Lehmann. Eckebrecht is an experienced sales and marketing […]

Finra trims operating loss but compensation costs climb

{June 20th, 2014} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

  The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. increased its revenue and lowered its operating loss last year to eke out $1.7 million in net income, according to the regulator’s annual report, which was released Friday. Finra brought in $900.7 million in net revenue in 2013, compared with $878.6 million in 2012, and lowered its operating […]

A Generation On The Move Needs Your Help

{June 20th, 2014} by Lloyd Lofton, CSA, LUTCF

  When you finish this article, you will be asked one question: Will you take advantage of this unique moment in history? Social Security became law in 1935 with the first tax to fund Social Security levied in 1937. Ida May Fuller of Ludlow, Vt., received the first benefit check on Jan. 1, 1940, after […]

The Irony Isn’t Lost

{June 20th, 2014} by Lloyd Lofton

  The debate in the market place for years is should retiree’s put their retirement funds in an annuity or in the marketplace? The arguments for not putting money in an annuity, using a company 401(k) market fund to “grow” the asset to ensure a hedge against inflation and of course avoid what is presented […]

Iowa Woman To Serve 3 Years In Federal Prison For Fraud

{June 20th, 2014} by Trish Mehaffey, The Gazette, Cedar Rapids, Iowa

June 20–A woman who defrauded two insurance companies out of more than $175,000 in sales commissions was sentenced to more than three years Thursday in federal court. Melissa Ilene Williams, 46, of Dike, pleaded guilty in March to one count of mail fraud. In a plea agreement, Williams who was an insurance policy salesperson, admitted […]

Allianz Life Gains Exclusive Barclays Index Agreement Through 2020

{June 19th, 2014} by Business Wire

MINNEAPOLIS–(Business Wire)–Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz Life) today announced that the exclusive Barclays US Dynamic Balance Index agreement with Barclays, which began in August 2013, will extend through 2020. This includes offering the index on Allianz Life Fixed Index Annuity (FIA) and Fixed Index Universal Life (FIUL) products. The Barclays US Dynamic […]

5 annuity strategies with high client appeal

{June 19th, 2014} by Daniel Williams

  According to Jeffrey Singer, a National Annuity Wholesaler at First American Insurance Underwriters, Inc., advisors shouldn’t limit themselves when advising clients on annuity products. Singer sees the product, along with life insurance, as one of the most flexible products available for helping clients successfuly meet their financial objectives. Flexibility is the key word here […]

VAs Lose Ground In The Bank Channel

{June 19th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

For variable annuities (VAs) sold through the bank channel, it has been a tough few quarters as insurance carriers cut back on VAs and as interest rate spreads favored fixed annuities over bank certificates of deposits. The rise of fixed index annuities (FIAs) further cut into any gains VAs might have made. First-quarter fixed and […]

Bank Channel Diversifies Product Mix

{June 19th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

In a world where financial advisors routinely hear the praises of specialization — either by developing a tax specialty, digging deep into estate planning minutiae or developing a long-term care planning shop — it’s easy to overlook the advantages of diversification. In some quarters, you’d even think that diversification had been given up for dead, […]

Essential skills for advising women

{June 19th, 2014} by Paul Wilson

  How would you feel if I turned my back on you for this entire presentation?” Kathleen Burns Kingsbury, LMHC, CPCC, asked the audience as she opened her session “Essential Skills for Advising Women in Couples” at the recent MDRT annual meeting in Toronto. “That’s what many women feel like when they’re meeting with an […]

Watch The Ratings Downgrades Read at http://blog.insurancenewsnet.com/2014/06/19/watch-the-ratings-downgrades/ Copyright © InsuranceNewsNet, Inc.

{June 19th, 2014} by Linda Koco

Downgrades in company ratings do make a difference, at least to some buyers. So, when the changes come, the advisors need to look sharp. Let’s begin with a couple of stories. One acquaintance told me how irate he became when he learned that the carrier holding some of his retirement assets had a rating downgrade. […]

Content marketing, social media & more at the DSD14

{June 19th, 2014} by Lynette Gil

Here in Denver, we have tons of new start-ups and digital agencies strewn all over town: from downtown, to DTC, Boulder and even Fort Collins. I like to say that we’re like a mini-San Fran with our digital, social media and start-up culture. And it seems that the folks at TechMedia think so too, since […]

OneAmerica Retirement Services Expands Sales Regions, Appoints New Leadership

{June 19th, 2014} by OneAmerica

  INDIANAPOLIS (June 19, 2014) – The companies of OneAmerica® today announced the implementation of a three-region sales and distribution structure for retirement services. The new structure will improve geographic proximity, create efficiencies and increase productivity. Paul Citron has been named vice president of national sales and field service and will now oversee all three […]

Lincoln Financial Group’s M.O.O.D. of America Survey Finds Overall Optimism Continues to Rise

{June 19th, 2014} by Business Wire

Latest Research Shows that 83 Percent of Americans Are Optimistic About Their Financial Futures, Up 15 Percent Since 2011 60 Percent Are Confident Their Financial Situation Will Improve in the Next Year, Which is Nearly Twice the Amount from 3 Years Ago Optimism and Confidence Are Not Translating into Americans Saying They Feel “Very Prepared” […]

Securian Financial Group names new CEO

{June 18th, 2014} by Maggie Jensen, APR

  St. Paul, MN, June 18, 2014 – Securian Financial Group today announced that President Christopher M. Hilger will also serve as chief executive officer, effective January 1, 2015. Chairman and CEO Robert L. Senkler, who will retire from active management after serving as CEO for 20 years, will remain as chairman of the board […]

Nontraditional Families Represent Huge Opportunity For Advisors

{June 18th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

Call it the irony of the modern family — and the opportunity of tomorrow’s advisors. Nontraditional families are more likely than traditional families to talk to their children about personal financial issues, yet nontraditional households are also less likely to rely on professional help to build a financial plan, a new Allianz survey shows. The […]

NAFA Response: Beware of the Equity Indexed Annuity blog – Could it be merely a Siren Song?

{June 18th, 2014} by NAFA President

NAFA Response: Beware of the Equity Indexed Annuity blog – Could it be merely a Siren Song? NAFA Response to Zamansky LLC Posted: May 07, 2014 As an organization exclusively dedicated to promoting the awareness and understanding of fixed annuities, NAFA, the National Association for Fixed Annuities, is compelled to share its concerns regarding the way […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Kansas City Life Insurance Company

{June 18th, 2014} by Business Wire

 OLDWICK, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A (Superior) and the issuer credit rating (ICR) of “a” of Kansas City Life Insurance Company (Kansas City Life) [NASDAQ: KCLI]. Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the FSR of A- (Excellent) and the ICR of “a-” of Kansas City Life’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Sunset […]

Forget fines, regulators want public scoldings

{June 18th, 2014} by Joe Duran

Fines for bad actions are yesterday’s news; today, sanctions come with acknowledgment of guilt and potential for personal liability and loss The world has changed in many ways, but the inflow of former brokers into adviser roles and the shift in perspective for our nation’s regulators are two things you’d best not ignore. Fines for […]

Poll Finds Advisor Optimism Rises Over Last Year

{June 18th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

A poll of financial advisors by the SEI Advisor Network reveals that 76 percent believe U.S. economic growth this year will be between zero and 10 percent, and an additional 17 percent think growth will come in at between 11 percent and 20 percent. Last year only 41 percent of advisors anticipated slow and steady […]

The Universal Life Crisis: A Potential Fix

{June 18th, 2014} by Susan J. Bruno

The many advantages and disadvantages of a prolonged low-interest-rate environment affect almost all areas of clients’ personal financial plans. For example, low interest rates may be attractive to a young couple applying for a mortgage to buy their first home, but those same low interest rates on bonds and CDs hinder the lifestyles of many […]

Annuity Awareness or Bust

{June 18th, 2014} by Steven A. Morelli

You might not be, well, aware of this but June is Annuity Awareness Month. Yes, I can hear you thinking, “Do we really need another awareness month in our lives? After all, isn’t it already Student Safety Awareness Month?” It is, but do those kids know how to keep safe through retirement? No, it’s all […]

Study Finds Substantial Change In Retirement On The Horizon

{June 18th, 2014} by PR Newswire Association LLC

PR Newswire Association LLC MILWAUKEE, June 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Significant differences exist between the attitudes and expectations of Americans who are currently working vs. those already retired, according to the most recent findings from Northwestern Mutual’s http://www.northwesternmutual.com/news-room/2014PlanningandProgress.aspx#Retirement-Redefined. Most notably, the research suggests that substantial changes in retirement age and lifestyle are on the horizon. […]

Beware state premium taxes on annuities

{June 18th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

Under-the-radar taxes pose big planning challenges for financial advisers (iStock) Don’t be alarmed, but did you know that a handful of states slap premium taxes on carriers for annuities — and that some of that expense is being passed onto clients? The practice has been ongoing for years, but it’s largely been taking place under […]

May Life Insurance Activity Down 1.3%

{June 18th, 2014} by MIB Life Index

Braintree, MA. (June 18, 2014) – U.S. application activity for individually underwritten life insurance declined slightly in May, off -1.3% year-over-year, all ages combined, according to the MIB Life Index. Despite this month’s decline, the 2014 trend line shows a market slowly recovering, with May’s close -3.1% YTD, an improvement over first quarter’s -5.4% YTD. […]

Penn Mutual Life unveils guaranteed choice whole life product

{June 18th, 2014} by IFAwebnews Staff

The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company has rolled out its latest whole life insurance policy that the company says is flexible and offers several distinct advantages. Dubbed as the Guaranteed Choice Whole Life, the policy has been designed to deliver individuals, families and business owners guaranteed death protection, builds policy cash value. Customized to meet […]

June is National Annuity Awareness Month

{June 18th, 2014} by Mike McGlothlin CFP®, CLU, ChFC, LUTCF

National Annuity Awareness Month spotlights the need for a financial vehicle that provides abundant client value and creates predictable income, but comes at the highest level of scrutiny. In June, we need to focus on the real benefits of annuities and maximizing those benefits for our clients. Tax-deferred growth: With increased tax rates as high […]

Industry Devotes June To Annuity Awareness

{June 17th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

The Society for Annuity Facts & Education (SAFE), a nonprofit with the aim of educating consumers about annuities, has joined with an industry coalition to declare June as Annuity Awareness Month. Hardly a day goes by without dire warnings about underfunded retirements and people outliving meager savings, according to members of the coalition made up […]

Industry backs June for annuity awareness month

{June 17th, 2014} by Daniel Williams

Well, it’s June, so it must be… annuity awareness month? If a group of annuity industry organizations have their way, it will become a reality. Members of the coalition, which include life and annuity carriers, marketing groups, market research groups and distributors, among others, are bullish on making June their month. Click here to read…

Retirement income: How to improve on the 4% rule

{June 17th, 2014} by Warren S. Hersch

As a guide to retirement income planning, the 4 percent rule clearly needs to be revisited, as this article suggests. Based on a 75-year analysis of stock market returns and retirement scenarios, the rule surmises that retirees who withdraw 4.2 percent of their investment portfolio in the initial year of retirement, then adjust withdrawals in […]

Annuity Burglary Trial Set for June 23

{June 17th, 2014} by Steven A. Morelli

The trial has been postponed for a former insurance agent in California charged with 29 felonies for selling annuities. Alan S. Lewis is accused of “twisting” in the repeated sale of annuities to some of his clients. The prosecutor has said the $300,000 surrender charge that 12 clients incurred amounted to embezzlement and grand theft. […]

Ameriprise Study Reveals More Women are Taking Command of Their Finances

{June 17th, 2014} by BusinessWire

Two in Five Women (41%) Consider Themselves Primary Financial Decision-Makers;Financial Engagement and Attitudes Improve with Age   MINNEAPOLIS, Jun 17, 2014 (BUSINESS WIRE) –Women are feeling confident and many are taking the lead in making financial decisions, according to a new study by Ameriprise Financial /quotes/zigman/388427/delayed/quotes/nls/ampAMP+1.32%. The new Women and Financial PowerSM study, which surveyed […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Jackson National Life Insurance Company and Its Affiliates

{June 17th, 2014} by A.M. Best

OLDWICK – JUNE 17, 2014 A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating of A+ (Superior) and the issuer credit ratings of “aa-” of Jackson National Life Insurance Company, its wholly owned subsidiary, Jackson National Life Insurance Company of New York (together known as JNL) and its direct parent, Brooke Life Insurance Company. Additionally, A.M. […]

House seeks to block FSOC actions

{June 17th, 2014} by Arthur D. Postal

The House Financial Services Committee is moving to effectively shut down the operations of the Federal Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) for at least six months. The panel has scheduled a vote Thursday on H.R. 4387, the FSOC Transparency and Accountability Act. It would bar the FSOC from designating any financial institution as systemically significant for […]

Under New CEO Hancock, Smaller AIG Expected to Focus on Growth

{June 16th, 2014} by Noah Buhayar and Hugh Son

American International Group Inc. promoted Peter Hancock to chief executive officer as the company focuses on growth after his predecessor stabilized the insurer and paid back a 2008 government bailout. Hancock, 55, oversees property-casualty insurance and will be CEO and president as of Sept. 1, the New York-based firm said yesterday. He previously spent 20 […]

Annuity owners: “Ownership boosts retirement confidence”

{June 16th, 2014} by Mark Morris

A recent study by LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute has revealed another reason to consider annuities in retirement planning — they provide a boost of confidence. When asked about their confidence in living a desired retirement lifestyle, 47 percent of retirees and pre-retirees who own annuities said annuity ownership contributed to their feeling of confidence. LIMRA […]

The youngest baby boomers turn 50 this year

{June 16th, 2014} by Warren S. Hersch

As the youngest baby boomers turn age 50 this year, many will want to take advantage of catch-up contributions available to those participating in 401(k) plans (the IRS limit this year is $5,500, an amount unchanged from the 2013 total) and individual retirement accounts ($1,000, also unchanged from last year). Many will also be looking […]

Moving beyond bilingual

{June 16th, 2014} by Carlos Rojas

The largest ethnic group in America is also furthest behind in saving for retirement. Hispanic workers born outside of the United States have the lowest retirement plan participation rate of all other workers.  Sixty-nine percent of Latino working-age households do not own assets in a retirement account, compared to 37 percent of white households. Click […]

10 ways insurance companies can best approach social media

{June 16th, 2014} by Sam Ford

Last December, I had the pleasure of speaking at the annual Insurance Executive Conference. Our session focused on how the insurance industry should be thinking about the ways social media platforms might transform how this industry relates to, and communicates with, our audiences. Based on the discussion we had that day, here are 10 key […]

Allianz Survey: Even ‘Modern Families’ Feel Financial Insecurity

{June 16th, 2014} by David Fondler, Pioneer Press, St. Paul, Minn.

By David Fondler, Pioneer Press, St. Paul, Minn. McClatchy-Tribune Information Services June 15–Since the recession, the convergence of economic and social trends has led to some interesting family dynamics. As the economy slowed, other things seemed to slow down as well: People buying homes later in life, or not at all; getting married later in […]

MetLife Directs Its Attention To The Middle Market

{June 16th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

MetLife said it wants to increase its penetration into the middle market and become “a player” in the group voluntary benefits marketplace. Expansion into the middle market represents an important change for MetLife, which has traditionally been the go-to supplier of insurance and benefits products for many of the nation’s largest companies. “MetLife retail is […]

Fla. Couple Accused Of Cheating Woman Out Of Dead Husband’s Life Insurance

{June 16th, 2014} by Dana Treen

By Dana Treen, The Florida Times-Union, Jacksonville McClatchy-Tribune Information Services June 16–A husband and wife accused of leaving the woman’s mother with $115 after stealing at least $370,000 in savings, property and redeemed life insurance are wanted by St. Johns County authorities on charges of exploitation and fraud. Teresa E. Oakes, 54, and Robert E. […]

Morningstar: First-Quarter US Net Sales of Variable Annuities an Estimated Loss of $1.1 Billion

{June 16th, 2014} by Fran Matso Lysiak

WASHINGTON – As first-quarter 2014 total sales of variable annuities in the United States dropped 3.2%, net sales were negative, coming in at an estimated loss of $1.1 billion, according to Morningstar Inc. However, this represented a narrower loss in flows than the $2.8 billion in the fourth quarter of last year, Morningstar said. Total […]

Limra: First-Quarter Sales of Guaranteed Universal Life Fall 48%, Drive Individual Life Drop of 7%

{June 16th, 2014} by Fran Matso Lysiak

Best’s News Service – June 16, 2014 11:41 AM WINDSOR, Conn. – The first quarter of 2014 was off to a slow start as sales of individual life insurance in the United States, based on new annualized premium, declined 7%, according to Limra. Policy count dropped 4% in the quarter. For all of 2013, total […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of American National Insurance Company and Its Subsidiaries

{June 16th, 2014} by Best's News Service

Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A (Excellent) and the issuer credit rating (ICR) of “a+” of American National Insurance Company (ANICO) [NASDAQ:ANAT]. Additionally, A.M. Best has upgraded the ICR to “a+” from “a” and affirmed the FSR of A (Excellent) of ANICO’s subsidiary, American National Life Insurance Company […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Ohio National Financial Services, Inc., and Its Subsidiaries

{June 16th, 2014} by Best's News Service

Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “aa-” of The Ohio National Life Insurance Company (ONLIC) and its wholly owned subsidiary, Ohio National Life Assurance Corporation (ONLAC) (together referred to as Ohio National Life Group). These companies are the principal insurance […]

A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Sentinel Security Life Insurance Company

{June 16th, 2014} by Best's News Service

Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating of B++ (Good) and issuer credit rating of “bbb” of Sentinel Security Life Insurance Company (Sentinel Security Life) (Salt Lake City, UT) [OTCBB: SENI]. The outlook for both ratings is negative. The negative outlook reflects A.M. Best’s concerns that despite a recent $10 million surplus […]

A.M. Best Upgrades Ratings of Liberty Bankers Life Insurance Company and Its Subsidiaries

{June 16th, 2014} by A.M. Best

Oldwick – A.M. Best has upgraded the issuer credit ratings to “bb+” from “bb” and affirmed the financial strength ratings (FSR) of B (Fair) of Liberty Bankers Life Insurance Company (Liberty Bankers) (Oklahoma City, OK), and its wholly owned life insurance subsidiaries, The Capitol Life Insurance Company (Dallas, TX) and American Benefit Life Insurance Company […]

Dave Ramsey deserves everything Brian Stoffel gave him — and them some

{June 16th, 2014} by David Lewis

But maybe this is all one huge misunderstanding. Could Ramsey simply have been mistaken about his math? We all make mistakes, after all. Nope. Not at all. Last year, the financial giant Dave Ramsey was bested on his own show. Amazingly, this got very little press coverage and yet this one single interview has huge […]

The 2014 NUL Industry Elite Award Winners

{June 16th, 2014} by Emily Holbrook

This year’s nominations for the National Underwriter Industry Elite Awards were stronger than ever, a who’s who of the best and brightest in the realms of market innovation, industry awareness, community outreach and young talent. Our winners and honorable mentions this year stand out for their leadership, drive and brilliance that only the Industry Elites […]

Five in a row: The secrets of their success

{June 15th, 2014} by Katy Read

What makes a company a top workplace for five years in a row? Diane Gates, 44, of Minnetonka, looks at books with her twins, Theo and Haley Gates-Buss, both 22 months old, at Bright Horizons, the on-site child care facility for employees at Allianz Life Insurance. Both Gates and her partner Shelley Buss work at […]

A Conversation About Principal Financial’s Boomer-Millennial Strategy

{June 14th, 2014} by Neal St. Anthony, Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

By Neal St. Anthony, Star Tribune (Minneapolis) McClatchy-Tribune Information Services June 14–John Hoffman was considering careers in law or foreign relations when theMinnesota State University, Mankato graduate was recruited by aPrincipal Financial agent to join him inSioux Falls, S.D., as a financial adviser. About 18 months later, theIowa-based financial services company transferred Hoffman tothe Twin […]

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Do You Really Know What Retirement is?

{June 13th, 2014} by Wink's RockStars

The link to the 6.5.14 National Annuity Awareness Month Webcast #1 replay: https://nafa.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/NAFA-Webcast-Do-We-Really-Know-What-Retirement-Is-6-5-14-8.30-AM.mov   Don’t miss out on the other events at: http://annuityed.org/about-safe/national-annuity-awareness-month/     JUNE IS NATIONAL ANNUITY AWARENESS MONTH During the month of June, fellow trade associations will provide educational material, webcasts and social media communications to help educate financial professionals and the public […]

American National Insurance Company Introduces New Partial and Full Accelerated Benefit Riders for Critical, Chronic and Terminal Illness

{June 13th, 2014} by Globe Newswire

American National Insurance Company Introduces New Partial and Full Accelerated Benefit Riders for Critical, Chronic and Terminal Illness GALVESTON, Texas, June 10, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — American National Insurance Company, one of the leaders in Life Insurance Living Benefits announces enhanced Living Benefits for life insurance policyholders through the expansion of their Accelerated Benefit Riders […]

Financial Fraud Crooks Are Getting Smarter

{June 13th, 2014} by Chao Xiong, Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

By Chao Xiong, Star Tribune (Minneapolis) McClatchy-Tribune Information Services June 13–East metro authorities gathered recently to discuss a crime trend they say is draining people of their life savings and going underreported: financial fraud. The crime will only increase, they warned, as more criminals trade violent crimes for financial crimes due to the low-risk, high-reward […]

We’re all in the jailhouse now : Blog

{June 13th, 2014} by Steven A. Morelli

Justice delayed is justice denied. That is familiar phrase rich in meaning and one of those that only makes complete sense when it is staring you in the face. That’s the situation for Alan S. Lewis right now, who is in a California jail awaiting a June 23 trial. He is facing 29 felonies and […]

Industry-wide annuity sales up 13 percent year over year

{June 13th, 2014} by Lynette Gil

Industry-wide annuity sales are up 13.1 percent year over year with sales during the first quarter reaching $56.1 billion. When compared with the first quarter of 2013, sales totaled $49.6 billion, according to data reported by Beacon Research and Morningstar, Inc. published in a press release by the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI). “Combined annuity sales […]

Bank Life Sales Rebound From 5-Year Low

{June 13th, 2014} by N/A

Windsor, CT, June 10, 2014…. Total life insurance sales through financial institutions reached $307 million in the first quarter, a 13 percent increase from the fourth quarter. In the fourth quarter sales had dropped to $271 million, the lowest quarterly result since first quarter 2009 when production totaled $190 million, according to the BISRA Life […]

6 Trends That Will Transform Insurance

{June 13th, 2014} by Chris McMahon

To increase market share and increase relevancy, Accenture says insurers must plan for the blurring between the digital and physical world, the rise of crowdsourcing, the advent of the data supply chain and three other trends. Six trends will have a transformative effect on insurance over the next three to five years, according to “Accenture […]

MDRT’s Magni: Compliance requirements are hurting the business

{June 13th, 2014} by Warren S. Hersch

At the 2014 MDRT annual meeting in Toronto, NU Senior Editor Warren S. Hersch interviewed Peter Magni, a financial representative of Wellesley Financial Group & Insurance Agency, based in Wellesley, Mass. Click HERE for excerpts of the interview.  

Why you should be part of the 5th annual Social Media Day

{June 13th, 2014} by Lynette Gil

Come Monday, June 30th, if you start seeing the hashtag #SMDay on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or other websites, don’t be alarmed. The hashtag stands for Mashable’s Social Media Day and is a great event and movement for everyone to take part of the discussion both online and offline. This day was created for people worldwide […]

Game Changers

{June 13th, 2014} by Angelo John Lewis

A new generation of annuity products reflects the industry’s reaction to the financial crisis:  GameChangers

Individual life sales down 7%

{June 13th, 2014} by Emily Holbrook

The life insurance industry received some upsetting news today. According to LIMRA, total individual life insurance new annualized premium fell seven percent in the first quarter 2014. In its Retail Individual Life Insurance Sales Report, points to universal life sales as the culprit for the drop. “The decline is being driven by the drop in […]

Variable Annuity Sales Dip Again

{June 13th, 2014} by Andrew Coen

Variable annuities are still in negative territory. Variable annuity net sales declined$1.1 billion for the first quarter following a$2.8 billion loss in flows from the 2013 fourth quarter, according to new data released by Morningstar Thursday. Variable-annuity total sales in the first quarter dropped to$33.5 billion, or 6.4%, from$35.8 billion in the previous quarter. Henry […]

Apollo-Linked Insurer Said to Invest in Lender AmeriHome

{June 12th, 2014} by Jody Shenn

An insurer tied to Apollo Global Management LLC (APO) bought a stake in AmeriHome Mortgage Company LLC, a lender taken over this year by a group including former Countrywide Financial Corp. executives, according to three people with knowledge of the investment. The deal makes Athene Holding Ltd. among the biggest investors in the Woodland Hills, […]

North American Company for Life and Health Insurance has Best Indexed Universal Life Insurance Product Claims YourLifeSolution.com

{June 12th, 2014} by PRWeb

Chicago, IL (PRWEB) June 12, 2014 YourLifeSolution.com, a service which compares life insurance products in an effort to aid consumers in finding the best options, is today releasing their endorsement of North American Company for Life and Health Insurance as the overall best indexed universal life insurance carrier in existence. The basis for this assessment […]

New annuities offer exposure to equities and downside protection

{June 12th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

For life insurers, the next big area for product development is the uncapped indexed annuity: a strategy that purports to allow nervous clients to benefit from surging equity indexes while having downside protection. The last six to 12 months have been hot on the development front for life insurers that sell indexed annuities. Their enthusiasm […]

The $500,000 Life Insurance Gap

{June 12th, 2014} by Ashlea Ebeling

Most families say they want enough life insurance to cover 14 years of lost income should the breadwinner die, but they have enough to cover only three years, according to a Life Insurance Gap survey put out by New York Life. That stark difference between perception and reality puts families at great financial risk, says […]

Life Insurance Coverage Gap Widens Again

{June 12th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

The difference between the median amount of life insurance coverage in place compared with the amount needed to cover self-reported needs – known as the insurance coverage gap – widened by more than $30,000 in the five-year period ending in 2013, a new study finds. Previous studies had found the gap to be growing, but […]

Annuities Put The Guarantee Into Retirement Planning

{June 12th, 2014} by Linda Koco

TORONTO – Annuity and life insurance products figure large in retirement planning when the clients want or need guarantees. Some people have distaste for insurance, allowed insurance expert Curtis V. Cloke in a speech here at the annual meeting of the Million Dollar Round Table. “But unless your client is willing to have a discussion […]

501(c)(3) Tax-Exempt Status Granted to the Society for Annuity Facts and Education (SAFE), Inc.

{June 11th, 2014} by Press Release

Washington, DC (April 8, 2014) – The Society for Annuity Facts and Education, Inc. (SAFE) is proud to announce it has been granted tax-exempt status as a charitable organization dedicated to educational purposes under Section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code. SAFE serves as a resource for consumers to learn in a fact-based […]

New Variable Annuity Strengthens Forethought’s Annuity Platform

{June 11th, 2014} by N/A

Indianapolis, IN, June 10, 2014 — Counter to industry trends toward fewer variable annuity benefits, Forethought Life Insurance Company, a subsidiary of Global Atlantic Financial Group Limited, is offering additional attractive options for variable consumers, continuing to build upon its compelling ForeRetirement variable annuity suite. The updated ForeRetirement variable annuities now offer Daily +4, another […]

Washington Commissioner Disciplines Producers for Violations

{June 11th, 2014} by N/A

Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler issued fines to several insurance companies, agents and brokers who violated state insurance regulations during May. The fines totaled $12,250. They are: Insurance companies Benefit Marketing Solutions and Benefit Services Association, Norman, Okla. Kreidler ordered the company, which is not licensed in Washington, to cease and desist selling service contracts to […]

IIG Joins As Sponsor of National Annuity Awareness Month

{June 11th, 2014} by Mark Stone

Park City, UT (May 30, 2014) – Insurance Insight Group (IIG) has joined the Coalition for Annuity Awareness to support National Annuity Awareness Month. Designed to provide awareness and understanding of annuities and their benefits in financial and retirement planning, activities in support of the inaugural National Annuity Awareness Month will occur throughout the month […]

Prudential Broadens Its Distribution And Product Mix

{June 11th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

Prudential Financial has a simple approach to the “age wave” of retiring baby boomers: broaden the product portfolio and diversify the distribution channels. With a distribution force of 125,000 brokers and advisors, more than 25,000 institutional clients and 30 million individual customers, how Prudential chooses to sell life and annuities yields clues about market trends. […]

Many affluent investors ‘have no idea’ what alt investments mean

{June 11th, 2014} by Melanie Waddell

Affluent investors across various age groups exhibit a lack of knowledge about alternative investments, with nearly 42 percent saying they have “no idea” what the term means, according to a just-released survey by Jackson National. In its 2014 Alternative Investments Survey, Jackson National Life Insurance Co. found that of the 574 investors polled — which […]

Don’t Fear the MVA

{June 11th, 2014} by Jonathan C. Illig

For many insurance professionals, MVA is a “four letter word.” This is because a Market Value Adjustment, or MVA, is an additional potential charge that can decrease the total “walk-away dollar value” of a deferred annuity in the event of a full surrender or excess withdrawal (any withdrawal that is more than the annual penalty-free […]

When Good Advisors Go Bad

{June 11th, 2014} by Linda Koco

TORONTO – What do the following have in common? Misrepresentation of products and services; failure to identify customer needs and recommend the correct solution; conflict between personal gain and professional responsibility; negative remarks about competitors; lack of knowledge and skills, and omission of information about limitations of products/services. According to psychologist Mary Gresham, founder of […]

Annuities Put The Guarantee Into Retirement Planning

{June 11th, 2014} by Linda Koco

TORONTO – Annuity and life insurance products figure large in retirement planning when the clients want or need guarantees. Some people have distaste for insurance, allowed insurance expert Curtis V. Cloke in a speech here at the annual meeting of the Million Dollar Round Table. “But unless your client is willing to have a discussion […]

N.J. Man Charged With Stealing Relative’s Annuity

{June 11th, 2014} by N/A

TRENTON – Acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman announced that a Sussex County man was arraigned in court today on charges that he allegedly attempted to steal thousands of dollars from an elderly relative’s annuity and pretended to be the relative in correspondence with the insurance company. Jason Crozier, 43, of Franklin, was charged in […]

Dads Worth About $24,000 Around the House This Year

{June 10th, 2014} by PRWeb

  Foster City, Calif. (PRWEB)June 09, 2014 A father’s typical jobs around the house are worth$24,103 this year, up slightly from his value in 2013. Insure.com’s annual Father’s Day Index measures the “value of Dad” based on a list of common household tasks and average wages for those duties from matching occupations from the Bureau […]

Why Life Agents Should Convene Family Meetings

{June 10th, 2014} by Linda Koco

TORONTO – It is common for financial professionals to have badly outdated wills, said Dr. Thomas William Deans in a presentation here at the 2014 Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT) annual meeting. But what about the late Robert Kennedy, the U.S. Senator and former U.S. Attorney General who was assassinated in 1968? Kennedy was an […]

Why Annuities? Balance for Today’s Retiree.

{June 10th, 2014} by Jonathan C. Illig

Many prospects, especially “boomers,” who could greatly benefit from a guaranteed annuity don’t understand why insurance companies offer retirement solutions. This is understandable, after all they are the “401(k) generation,” and the ignorance of the benefits offered by guaranteed annuities, particularly in the mainstream financial press, is overwhelming. Thus, it is often both beneficial and […]

AIG promotes Peter Hancock to CEO, replacing Benmosche

{June 10th, 2014} by Bloomberg News

  AIG chief Robert Benmosche, 70, stayed on longer than he’d previously planned. (Bloomberg News)   American International Group Inc. (AIG), the largest commercial insurer in the U.S. and Canada, promoted Peter Hancock to be the next chief executive officer, replacing Robert Benmosche, who repaid a U.S. bailout. Mr. Hancock, 55, who oversaw property-casualty insurance, […]

The Hartford announces top executive changes

{June 9th, 2014} by STEPHEN SINGER, AP Business Writer

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The Hartford Financial Services Group announced Monday a change in leadership as its chief executive steps down and is to be replaced by its chief financial officer. CEO Liam E. McGee, 59, also is relinquishing his job as president of the Hartford, Connecticut, property and casualty insurer and financial services company. […]

Bank Annuity Sales Up 31% In 1Q

{June 9th, 2014} by Cyril Tuohy

First-quarter fixed and variable annuity (VA) sales though banks reached $9.4 billion, an increase of 31 percent compared to the year-ago period, with higher fixed annuities sales the major reason for the increase, the Bank Insurance & Securities Research Associates (BISRA) said. First-quarter sales of fixed and VAs declined slightly from $9.5 billion in the […]

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