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Wink’s Articles

IUL Moves Into Era Of Volatility Control

{March 3rd, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

Mark Peterson, senior vice president with American International Group (AIG) Life Brokerage, has noticed a change in how advisors use indexed universal life (IUL) policies. Advisors used IULs primarily as a way to supplement retirement income. More recently, advisors have used the policies as a way to control volatility in retirement portfolios, he said. “If […]

National Annuity Awareness Month

{February 20th, 2015} by SAFE

  JUNE IS THE SECOND ANNUAL 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 on the important role annuity products play in helping Americans save for retirement as part of a secure retirement savings plan.   An array of […]

FIAs At Age 20: Industry Leaders Weigh In

{February 10th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

Ease-of-purchase, simplicity, income planning — those are some of the themes that drive fixed index annuity (FIA) business at a carrier that has been in the FIA market for 19 years. That carrier is Life Insurance Company of the Southwest (LSW), Addison, Texas. The company issued its first index annuity on April 7, 1996. It […]

New Indexed Annuities Grab Market Share as Banks Jump In

{February 2nd, 2015} by Bloombery News

(Bloomberg) — Buyers of U.S. annuities are clamoring for new products linked to indexes that may use elaborate strategies to control risk, attracting regulatory scrutiny as they widen a market that favors more traditional structures. A total of 27.7 percent of indexed annuities sold in the third quarter of last year are tied to measures […]

What’s the real annuity story? Accumulation or Income?

{January 20th, 2015} by Victoria Peterson and Jamie Johnson

A brand new year brings us a good time to reflect on past data from Wink’s Sales & Market Report to see if the hard facts give us any insight as to what the indexed annuity sales focus will be for 2015. Do the trends of indexed annuity sales point to an accumulation or income […]

From Antiquity to the Future: Financial Security Is Always Part of the Quest

{January 20th, 2015} by Bryan Mills, advzrtek@gmail.com

“The future belongs to those who prepare for it today.” This powerful quote by Malcolm Little may quite possibly be the cornerstone or central message upon which your financial practice is built. So how can you deliver what’s essentially a promise of financial certainty while exploring and embracing the many complex solutions offered to you […]

YEAR-TO-DATE Indexed Annuity Sales Greater Than Any Full Year But 2013

{January 1st, 2015} by Wink, Inc.

Wink, Inc. Releases Third-Quarter 2014 Indexed Sales Results Forty-seven indexed annuity carriers participated in the 69th edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report, representing 99.8% of indexed annuity production. Total third-quarter sales were $11.4 billion. Third-quarter indexed annuity sales were down 8.58% when compared to the previous quarter, and up 14.28% when compared to the […]

‘Longevity’ in annuities could be the big 2015 focus

{December 29th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

New Treasury Dept. guidance pushes insurers to innovate while indexed annuities expected to continue to shine   Where the retirement market will go next year is anybody’s guess, but insurance industry experts foresee a ramp-up in product development for certain types of annuities. For broker-dealers, 2014 appears to be the year of the indexed annuity, […]

The new variable and indexed annuity leaders

{December 24th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

Variable annuities are a staple of broker-dealers’ business, offering clients the opportunity to garner market exposure on a tax-deferred basis. In recent years, however, sales of indexed annuities — which credit interest to a client’s account — have climbed, particularly as advisers seek a fixed-income alternative with an optional guaranteed living benefit feature. Indexed annuities […]

Annuity trends: 2015 and beyond: Opinion

{December 12th, 2014} by Adam Cufr, Fourth Dimension Financial Group, LLC.

The economy has clearly changed and so has the role of annuities. Simply put, annuities have had to adapt, and fast. As advisors scramble to keep pace with the changing landscape, a look at the recent past will pay big dividends as we look to the future of the annuity market to see what may […]

Indexed annuity sales skyrocket

{November 25th, 2014} by Lynette Gil

A new report from Wink, Inc., the 69th edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report, which took into account 99.8 percent of indexed annuity production and with 47 indexed annuity carriers as participants, reveals that the market can easily do over $45 billion in sales by the end of this year. A total of $11.4 […]

The New Buzz with Indexed Annuities: Hybrid Indices

{November 19th, 2014} by Victoria Peterson and Jamie Johnson

We have been shouting this from the roof-tops, and see you posting and tweeting about it too: Indexed annuity sales were off the charts for the first half of 2014! In fact, second-quarter sales alone were $12.6 billion according to Wink’s Sales & Market Report. To gain perspective on how fantastic this is, second quarter […]

Make an annuity date with real estate right now

{November 18th, 2014} by Kevin Startt

They say that the definition of a good real estate agent is someone who has had a mortgage loophole named after them. Judging by a couple of recent articles though, real estate agents may have the last laugh as the housing industry shows increasing promise of continued growth. The entire financial services industry seems to […]

Wells Fargo pushes insurers to lower commissions on indexed annuities

{September 17th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

Annuity gatekeepers at broker-dealers are closely watching Wells Fargo Advisors as it presses insurers to lower commissions for the indexed annuities sold by its representatives. Last Monday, Wells Fargo launched an updated annuity platform that offers indexed annuities that have new features. Indexed annuities are fixed annuities that credit a minimum guaranteed interest rate and […]

Why Some Don’t Sell Fixed Annuities: Opinion

{September 17th, 2014} by Linda Koco

Industry researchers are reporting sales growth for fixed annuities, especially the fixed index annuity (FIA), during the first half of 2014. But are most producers selling them? No, according to a study from Cogent Reports. The researchers decided to find out why. The results — especially the reasons cited by insurance agents — are a […]

Younger Adults Buy Fixed Annuities, Too

{September 10th, 2014} by Linda Koco

An annuity agency executive was reviewing the average age of his firm’s fixed annuity buyers when he noticed a shift. There was a bump-up in buyers who were under age 50 when they bought their policies, Ken Nuss said. For instance, fixed index annuity (FIA) buyers in the “under-age-50” category represented 26 percent of his […]

Hybrid Indexes Help Spur FIA Sales

{September 3rd, 2014} by Linda Koco

Move over, double-takes. Given that fixed index annuity (FIA) sales have broken yet another quarterly record, and by a wide margin, triple-takes are in order. Hybrid indexes have something to do with this. First, the impossible-to-ignore numbers: In second quarter 2014, FIA sales totaled nearly $12.6 billion — 8.5 percent above the industry’s prior record […]

GLWBs Still Rock In The Retirement Set

{September 3rd, 2014} by Linda Koco

Some industry watchers believe that guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefits (GLWBs) will soon fall into disfavor in fixed index annuities (FIAs). One reason they cite is that the stock market is at new highs, so that will divert consumer attention to investing. Another reason they cite is that the much-discussed curtailment of GLWB features will dampen […]

The insanity in indexed annuity sales growth

{August 28th, 2014} by Kevin Startt

If the definition of insanity is continuing to do the same thing over and over and expecting different results, then Einstein would have to challenge the hypothesis today of many indexed annuity (FIA) and indexed life sales (IUL) agents. After $39 billion of FIA sales this past year and much of the $100 billion in […]

Annuity sales, a major Des Moines industry, see Q2 bump

{August 27th, 2014} by Matthew Patane

A major contributor to the Des Moines area’s insurance hub saw sales rise 36.5 percent in April, May and June compared with a year ago. Sales of indexed annuities from 39 companies grew to $12.6 billion in the second quarter, according to a new Wink’s Sales & Market Report. Indexed annuities are popular among retirees […]

Annuities Got It Goin’ On: Blog

{August 20th, 2014} by Steve Morelli

Will you need me? Will you still feed me? When I’m 64?” Short answer: no. When The Beatles sang this, today’s 64-year-olds were 17. Like most teenagers, they probably never imagined 64 would happen to them. Heck, they wouldn’t have trusted someone over 30. The age of 64 may as well have been 104. Just […]

Annuities’ Month-Long Celebration

{July 15th, 2014} by Victoria Peterson and Jamie Johnson

  The inaugural National Annuity Awareness Month came at an opportune time in the indexed annuity industry! Spreading the word about annuities is crucial, particularly when the economy is still rocky. Why do we believe June 2014 was a perfect time to launch this special event? Americans need annuities. They’re hearing about them. And they’re […]

Global Atlantic Targets Life & Annuity Business

{July 15th, 2014} by Linda Koco

Global Atlantic Financial Group has agreed to sell Ariel Re, its Bermuda-based property-casualty reinsurance company, to BTG Pactual, a Brazilian multinational investment banking firm. Assuming the deal receives regulatory approval, Global Atlantic will be free to focus more on growing its life and annuity business. That will likely be welcome news for life and annuity […]

NAFA Works with Treasury Department on Fixed Annuity Inclusion for QLACs

{July 2nd, 2014} by NAFA

NAFA responded when asked that all fixed rate annuities and fixed indexed annuities must pay at least 1% interest on the minimum guaranteed surrender value in order to comply with Standard Non-forfeiture Laws (SNFL). I personally own a fixed indexed annuity and thought it might be helpful to show you my recent – once again […]


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. […]

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 […]

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 […]

Guaranteed features propel indexed-annuity sales

{June 6th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

Just as living benefits helped drive broker-dealers’ variable annuity feeding frenzy years ago, these guaranteed features appear to be propelling firms’ sales of indexed annuities. Broker-dealers and wirehouses have taken a particular shine to indexed annuities , seeing them as a fixed-income alternative that can provide better growth than a CD. They’re an attractive product, […]

W.D.M. annuity firms in top five for first quarter sales

{June 3rd, 2014} by Matthew Patane

Sales in the indexed annuities sector, an industry that makes up a large part of the Des Moines area’s economy, grew 30.9 percent in the first three months of the year, according to a new report. Rising on the backs of more people preparing to retire and a better-performing stock market, the sector had $10.9 […]

June is national annuity awareness month

{June 3rd, 2014} by Daniel Williams

Get ready. June is National Annuity Awareness Month. What exactly does that mean?  Click here to find out!

FIA Sales Off At Athene, Rock At Allianz

{June 3rd, 2014} by Linda Koco

Athene USA tried to hold its ground in first quarter 2014 fixed index annuity sales. It sold more than $571.8 million, qualifying it to be one of the quarter’s top five sales leaders, according to Wink, Inc. However, the carrier still registered a sales decline from the previous quarter and also from first quarter last […]

Wink: First-Quarter US Sales of Indexed Annuities Up 38.6%; Average Commission to Agents Rises

{May 27th, 2014} by Fran Matso Lysiak

PLEASANT HILL, Iowa – Total sales of indexed annuities in the United States jumped 38.6% in the opening quarter of 2014 from the same period a year ago, as the average commission to sales agents rose 5.8%, up slightly from last quarter’s average, according to Wink Inc. This represented the first increase in the average […]

The top 10 indexed annuity carriers Q1 2014

{May 27th, 2014} by Daniel Williams

According to a [Wink’s Sales & Market Report] market report, indexed annuity sales hit nearly $10.9 billion in the first quarter. That number was a huge jump over the $7.8 billion sold in the same time a year ago, but down 6 percent from Q4 2013. In a blog posted by Sheryl J. Moore, President […]

It’s Not All About the GLWBs

{May 20th, 2014} by Victoria Peterson and Jamie Johnson

…It’s the guarantees in indexed annuities that really steal the show! By Victoria Peterson and Jamie Johnson We recently read a survey of annuity professionals that was conducted during the NAFA IMO Summit in October 2013, revealing the “must have” feature of annuities. Results show nearly 70% of those surveyed agreed that guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefits […]

Investment News Editorial: Finra right to watch indexed annuities

{May 11th, 2014} by InvestmentNews Editorial

Editorial Finra right to watch indexed annuities While there is no evidence yet that broker-dealers are taking advantage of investors with these products, there is potential for harm May 11, 2014 @ 12:01 am (Updated 11:09 pm) EST Roger Schillerstrom To its credit, the Financial Regulatory Authority Inc. is paying close attention to how and […]

Fixed annuity sales receiving added scrutiny from Finra

{May 5th, 2014} by Bruce Kelly and Darla Mercado

With broker-dealers selling a bigger share of indexed annuities, securities regulators are taking a closer look at policies and procedures around clients exchanging or giving up variable annuities in order to put those assets into products such as equity [fixed] indexed annuities. Broker-dealers are becoming more of a force in the world of indexed annuities, […]

More Allianz FIAs Sold By Registered Reps

{April 18th, 2014} by Linda Koco

Today, close to 70 percent of fixed index annuity production at Allianz Life is coming from registered representatives, according to Tom P. Burns. That’s up from less than 30 percent eight years ago, said the company’s chief distribution officer for annuities. Allianz has been the top seller of fixed index annuities (FIAs) for 14 of […]

Indexed annuities had record sales in 2013

{March 18th, 2014} by Victor Epstein

The indexed annuities industry benefited from surging stock markets in 2013, which helped boost its annual sales to a new record for the fifth consecutive year. The industry, which has a heavy presence in the Des Moines area, reported that its annual sales rose 13.4 percent from the prior year to $38.7 billion, according to […]


Indexed annuity sales hit $11.5 billion in Q4 2013

{March 14th, 2014} by Daniel Williams

Total fourth quarter sales hit $11.5 billion for indexed annuities, according to the latest Wink’s Sales & Market Report. The numbers trended up as indexed annuity sales rose 15 percent from the previous quarter and grew 35 percent compared to the same period a year ago. According to Wink’s, data from forty-four indexed annuity carriers […]

Sales up

Indexed annuity sales hit $11.5 billion in Q4 2013

{March 13th, 2014} by Daniel Williams

Total fourth quarter sales hit $11.5 billion for indexed annuities, according to the latest Wink’s Sales & Market Report. The numbers trended up as indexed annuity sales rose 15 percent from the previous quarter and grew 35 percent compared to the same period a year ago. According to Wink’s, data from forty-four indexed annuity carriers […]

Magic Johnson moves Iowa insurer to Illinois

{January 21st, 2014} by Victor Epstein

View video: http://bcove.me/pkwppl04 It’s not every day that Iowa loses an insurance company to another state, especially one with a higher premium tax rate, but EquiTrust announced Tuesday that it’s leaving the Des Moines area for Illinois and creating more than 200 jobs there. Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn announced the relocation along with Basketball Hall […]

Average IA Commissions Dip To Lowest Level Ever

{January 14th, 2014} by Linda Koco

Indexed annuities hit more than one quarterly record in third quarter. The record that’s been getting all the industry attention lately is the sales high of slightly over $10 billion. But commissions paid to indexed annuity agents also hit a record — a record low, that is. The indexed annuity commission received by the agent […]

Q1 indexed annuity sales down

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

Total first quarter indexed annuity sales hit $7.8 billion, down 8.2 percent from the previous quarter and 2.7 percent from the same quarter last year. The results, found in Wink’s Sales & Market Report (formerly AnnuitySpecs.com’s Indexed Sales & Market Report) were released on June 7 and should not be cause for too much despair […]