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Archive for January 2015

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  • 8 reasons you should be selling to Generation X

    {January 30th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch, whersch@SummitProNets.com

    As retirement advisors kick off their marketing and prospecting campaigns for the 2015, they would do well to customize their efforts to a demographic group that often receives less attention than others: generation X. So insists Brooke Worden, senior vice president of financial services at Weber Shandwick, who spearheaded a new study on the 65 […]

    Growing percentage of the elderly and near-elderly have debt

    {January 30th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch, whersch@SummitProNets.com

    The share of older American families that had debt in 2013 increased from 2010, according to new research. The Employee Benefits Research Institute discloses this finding in a January 2015 report, “Debt of the Elderly and Near-Elderly, 1992-2013.” The percentage of American families headed by individuals ages 55 or older with some level of debt […]

    The little annuity product with big buying potential

    {January 30th, 2015} by Ed McCarthy

    Annuities and long-term care insurance seem like a natural pairing — the insurance equivalent of chocolate and peanut butter. When the Pension Protection Act’s (PPA) changes for these hybrid (or linked) annuities took effect in 2010, it appeared this market was poised for rapid growth. But while some advisors and insurers have experienced solid sales […]

    How to sell an annuity, from A to Z

    {January 30th, 2015} by Vanessa De La Rosa

    As an independent advisor, Steven A. Plewes enjoys the freedom to run his business as he sees fit. Working entirely from home through a cloud-based system, Plewes helps his clients — who span 20 states — reach their financial goals by specializing in wealth management and retirement planning. Careful to use annuities that are tax-efficient […]

    400,000 Insurance Pros Needed By 2020

    {January 30th, 2015} by Chris McMahon, Source Media, Inc

    A looming labor shortage in insurance has led several industry players to launch a campaign to increase the sector’s visibility and desirability while promoting science, technology, engineering and math. The insurance industry is facing a talent shortage — and it’s getting worse. That’s according to David E. Coons, SVP of the Jacobson Group, a research […]

    Annuities Should Be Requirement In Employee Plans

    {January 30th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – Insurance industry advocates are applauding the introduction of bills in the House and Senate to make it easier for small businesses to join multiple employer retirement plans, but they are also encouraging lawmakers to require annuities be one of the options for employees. The Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) and the American Council of […]

    Insurance Industry Adds 4,200 Jobs in December

    {January 30th, 2015} by PR Web

    Atlanta, Georgia The insurance industry saw a modest increase in employment with the addition of 4,200 jobs for the month of December, according to the latest employment numbers from the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics released on January 9, 2015. The insurance industry grew by 0.17% last month and now sits roughly at 2.47 million […]

    SEC audit of Girard Securities focusing on supervision of branch offices

    {January 30th, 2015} by Bruce Kelly

    Firm hit with ‘massive’ data request, according to CEO’s memo Girard Securities has told its advisers that an SEC audit of the firm is focusing on supervision of branch offices, part of an industry-wide move by the agency. “On the first Monday of 2015, the first call I received was from the SEC informing me […]

    Prudential Enhances UL Offerings

    {January 29th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    Prudential has announced new options to a pair of popular universal life (UL) insurance policies as the company looks to make the policies more attractive in an era when low interest rates continue to dampen life insurance sales. The company said in a press release that its PruLife Founders Plus UL product will benefit from […]

    Securian Expands Retirement Plan Midwest Sales Staff

    {January 29th, 2015} by Business Wire

    Retirement plan sales vet joins Chicago office ST. PAUL, Minn.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– David Foley joined Securian Financial Group as a regional sales vice president in the Chicago office, where he will cover Illinois, Indiana, and portions of Wisconsin and Kentucky. In his new position, Foley is responsible for helping advisors in the small- to mid-sized qualified […]

    Longevity Risk Leads To Growth Opportunity

    {January 29th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    Longevity risk may be opening the door to the biggest growth opportunity for annuity carriers, according to the Deloitte Center for Financial Services. Should that happen, it could mean a big growth opportunity lies ahead for advisors who work with annuity products, too. But just how is this potential opportunity playing out? In its 2015 […]

    Gen X: The opportunity in front of all of us right now

    {January 29th, 2015} by Nilufer R. Ahmed

    When presenting research on the generations, I’m often asked why so much attention is given to Gen Y and so little to Gen X. LIMRA and other organizations certainly study Gen X (ages 33-50) but it’s fair to say they receive less attention than Gen Y (ages 25-32) and Baby Boomers (Ages 51-65). Some argue […]

    Woman fakes ex-husband’s death for $2 million life insurance payout

    {January 29th, 2015} by Steven A. Meyerowitz

    Irina Vorotinov has been charged by federal prosecutors in Minnesota with defrauding Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company of more than $2 million in life insurance proceeds by falsely claiming that her former husband had died. Her son, Alkon Vorotinov, was charged with actively concealing the fraudulent scheme. According to the criminal complaint and documents filed […]

    Class action suit filed against MetLife in NY for alleged misrepresentation

    {January 29th, 2015} by IFAwebnews Staff

    Claiming that MetLife’s “shadow insurance” practices have put the public in peril, a federal class action calls for its New York subsidiary to refund premiums. The subsidiary, Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., is the only defendant to the complaint Andrew Yale, of New York, filed on Monday. Yale says he bought a life insurance policy from […]

    Penn Mutual Life elects former Disney executive to board

    {January 29th, 2015} by IFAwebnews Staff

    PRESS RELEASE: The following content has been reprinted in whole or part from a press release or issued statement. The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company announced the election of James S. Hunt to the Horsham, Pa., company’s board of trustees. Hunt spent 15 years with Ernst & Young, and most recently as executive vice president […]

    Watertown insurance agent Loren Holzhueter ran $10 million Ponzi scheme, feds allege

    {January 29th, 2015} by Cary Spivak of the Journal Sentinel

    Loren Holzhueter raked in more than $10 million through a Ponzi scheme run out of his small Watertown insurance agency, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charged in a securities fraud lawsuit that seeks to freeze Holzhueter’s assets. At least 122 investors, some of whom the SEC said were “retired and have modest or limited […]

    John Hershock Joins WealthVest

    {January 29th, 2015} by PR Web

    Bozeman, MT & San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) January 29, 2015 WealthVest has recently taken on a new marketing consultant, John Hershock of Foothill Ranch, California. Hershock will utilize his over 24 years of wholesaling experience to develop strong relationships with financial professionals in this new role. Hershock began his financial industry career as an account […]

    Arkansas Insurance Commissioner Bans Funeral Home From Selling Pre-Paid Benefits Contracts

    {January 28th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Arkansas Insurance Commissioner Allen Kerr has issued an order that bans a funeral home from selling pre-paid funeral benefits contracts immediately. The Jacksonville, Arkansas-based Arkansas Funeral Care voluntarily surrendered its license to the Arkansas State Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors on Jan. 23, the state insurance department said. The department […]

    Consultant: Mobile Apps For Advisors At ‘Tipping Point’

    {January 28th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    A new report by the consulting firm Cogent Reports has found that financial advisors are almost as likely to use a mobile application as they are to access a website through a desktop computer when looking to connect with financial services providers. The mean number of monthly visits to a website hosted by a “best-in-class […]

    Partners Advantage Features Advanced Training and “I-DIAs” from Curtis Cloke

    {January 28th, 2015} by NAFA Staff

    Advanced concepts to help address clients’ retirement income needs and tax challenges are a hallmark of the training and techniques utilized by financial services professional Curtis Cloke. Now he is bringing his special approach to product positioning and retirement strategies through a strategic alliance with Partners Advantage. Cloke’s “I-DIAs” help financial professionals understand the special […]

    February 2nd – 6th, 2015 We are going to C-E-L-E-B-R-A-T-E

    {January 27th, 2015} by Jamie Johnson

    On February 5th, 2015 Indexed Annuities turn 20 years old! Wink is going to C-E-L-E-B-R-A-T-E this birthday all week long, during the first full week of the month and we invite you to join us. From February 2nd to February 6th,  YOU (yes, YOU!)  can access Wink’s AnnuitySpecs analysis tool for free, all week long*!! […]

    Where I’ve Been for the Past 18 Months

    {January 27th, 2015} by Sheryl J. Moore

    I know it has been a very long time since I’ve published any YouTube videos, articles, blogs, etc. I wanted to do a video, to help you understand why I’ve been  “missing in action” the past 18 months.  http://youtu.be/Uv0kVmvDWds Thank you everyone for your prayers, support, and love! I’m dedicated to helping all of you […]

    Loss Of Advisors Starting To Hurt Wirehouses

    {January 27th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    As many as 711 securities brokers who jumped ship to rival firms or started their own business took with them $98 billion in assets last year. Click HERE to view the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required

    Reassessing risk: making the case for indexed universal life

    {January 27th, 2015} by Jordan H. Smith

    Everything we do in life involves some element of risk. Some risks are known, and believed to be understood, while others are more uncertain and involve probability or magnitude that we find difficult to quantify. When investing, we generally seek to obtain the highest return possible given the amount of risk that we are able […]

    Florida Insurance Commissioner McCarty’s Reappointment in Doubt

    {January 27th, 2015} by Michael Adams

    Florida’s insurance regulator’s tenure could be coming to an end after more than a decade as the newly re-elected governor looks to shake up his administration by replacing the heads of state agencies. Rumors have been circulating that Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty may not survive the transition into Governor Rick Scott’s second term. And Scott’s […]

    Gov. Scott wants to replace top insurance regulator

    {January 27th, 2015} by Steve Bousquet - Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau

    TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott recruited a Louisiana state official as the replacement for Florida’s chief insurance regulator weeks before he publicly called for the regulator’s removal as part of a second-term reorganization. Scott’s office confirmed Monday that it asked for a resume from Ron Henderson, 45, the deputy insurance commissioner for consumer advocacy in […]

    5 things life insurers need to do to stay competitive

    {January 27th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    A recent report from the Deloitte Center for Financial Services reveals that the industry has to keep working on areas such as targeting underserved markets, simplifying products and launching new distribution programs. Today, in the middle and the long term, the life insurance and annuities industries are going to be:  Click HERE to read…

    Redmer Returns to Former Job as Maryland Insurance Commissioner

    {January 27th, 2015} by Thomas Harman, Tom.Harman@ambest.com

    ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Alfred Redmer Jr. is returning to his former job as Maryland insurance commissioner, accepting an appointment by new Republican Gov. Larry Hogan. Redmer succeeds Therese Goldsmith, who stepped down from the post when Hogan assumed office on Jan. 21. Redmer started his term last week, although he still must be confirmed by […]

    As more states recognize gay marriage, planning traps still await couples

    {January 27th, 2015} by Liz Skinner

    Supreme Court could agree to rule on one of many appeals cases by this summer, and largely clear things up Retirement and other financial planning is still a mine-field for many same-sex couples, especially those living in the 14 states that continue to bar gay couples from wedding. Even as the legalization of same-sex marriages […]

    Here’s why half of financial executives say Google or Amazon could change the way we buy life insurance

    {January 27th, 2015} by Nichole Morford

    Ask more than 50 industry leaders for their thoughts on the life insurance market, and you’re bound to get a wide range of answers. But if there’s one thing on which many of them agree, it’s that change is coming. We’re not talking small product tweaks here; we’re talking industry-shaking revolution. Click HERE to read…

    Agent Group CEO: Digital No Threat To Insurance Agents

    {January 27th, 2015} by Lenny Liebmann

    According an article in the January 18 New York Times, “Insurance via Internet is Squeezing Agents.” Don’t be so sure, says John Tiene, John Tiene, CEO of the Monmouth Junction, NJ-based Agency Network Exchange, an organization that pools independent agents’ premium for profit sharing to provide the entire membership a stable base to concentrate on […]

    SEC Announces Charges Against S&P For Fraudulent Ratings Misconduct

    {January 27th, 2015} by N/A

    The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced a series of federal securities law violations by Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services involving fraudulent misconduct in its ratings of certain commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS). S&P agreed to pay more than $58 million to settle the SEC’s charges, plus an additional $19 million to settle parallel cases announced […]

    Do [Indexed Annuities] Deserve The Bad Rap?

    {January 27th, 2015} by Cengage Learning, 2015 Paddock Publications

    [Indexed annuities] are very much misunderstood by the buying public. In a recent article by David Scranton of Scranton Financial Group about “annuity bashing,” he says, “consider the source when it comes to negative press about annuities.” It could be from an uninformed writer, wire houses, independent broker-dealers, mutual fund companies or banking institutions. Dollars […]

    A.M. Best Removes From Under Review and Affirms Ratings of Protective Life Corporation and Its Subsidiaries

    {January 26th, 2015} by A. M. Best

    A.M. Best Removes From Under Review and Affirms Ratings of Protective Life Corporation and Its Subsidiaries Oldwick – A.M. Best has removed from under review with negative implications and affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “aa-” of the primary life insurance subsidiaries of Protective Life […]

    Insurance Channel Shows Strong AUM Growth

    {January 26th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    The insurance channel had the greatest percentage rise in assets under management between 2008 and 2013, although insurance also had the smallest slice of the overall AUM pie, according to Boston-based Cerulli Associates. This was at a time when the overall financial advisor industry experienced nearly 13 percent growth in assets, though with fewer hands […]

    IRI: We Share President’s Retirement Security Goals

    {January 26th, 2015} by IRI

    IRI Presents Blueprint for Advancing Retirement Security Agenda WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) released the following statement from IRI President and CEO Cathy Weatherford following President Obama’s State of the Union address last night: “We share significant common ground with the President when it comes to helping middle-income Americans prepare and save […]

    You’re Missing Wealthy Millennials, Survey Finds

    {January 26th, 2015} by Ann Marsh

    Advisors are missing out by overlooking millennials, says a new survey by TD Ameritrade. “Millennials who are of modest means, but on the right path to greater wealth, represent a largely untapped opportunity,” the survey authors write, “yet they are largely overlooked by most financial firms.” Many in this group have not yet chosen advisors […]

    Advisers in Northeast prep for blizzard, close offices

    {January 26th, 2015} by Liz Skinner

    Firms planning ahead with staff and clients for days of potential power outages and working remotely Financial advisers in the Northeast heeded official warnings Monday of a “life threatening” blizzard on its way — many sending employees home early and making plans to work remotely over the next couple days if they can’t travel into […]

    Insurance Dept. Issues Alert After Agent Charged

    {January 26th, 2015} by The Associated Press

    JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi’s Insurance Department says an Indianola insurance agent has surrendered his license. A release from Commissioner Mike Chaney says Randal Ray Henson was charged in Sunflower County with false pretense. Chaney said the charge is related to allegations that Henson failed to forward premium payments to insurance carriers. Chaney says anyone […]

    8 ways to be more productive when working from home

    {January 26th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    When you rise in the morning, form a resolution to make the day a happy one to a fellow-creature – Sydney Smith Working from home is convenient on days when the roads are more like ice rinks suited for hockey playing, or when your dishwasher decides to throw a fit and flood your kitchen. The […]

    Annuities Are Constantly Adapting: BLOG

    {January 24th, 2015} by Rachel Summit, "FinanceMama" on Twitter

    As we near the end of January (can you believe it?), people are already starting to look at the forecasted annuity trends for 2015 to see what is proving to be true. In LifeHealthPro’s article, “Annuity trends: 2015 and beyond,” Adam Cufr took a look at the recent past and predicted future of the annuity […]

    RIAs, dually registered advisors enjoying double-digit AUM growth

    {January 23rd, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch, whersch@SummitProNets.com

    The number of financial advisors grew by a 5-year compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.4 percent between 2008 and 2013, according to new research. Cerulli Associates unveils this finding in the first quarter 2015 issue of “The Cerulli Edge: Advisor Edition.” The research examines critical issues facing financial advisors. Click HERE to read…

    Dai-ichi Receives Regulatory Approvals for Protective Acquisition

    {January 23rd, 2015} by The Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company, Limited

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. & TOKYO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company, Limited (TSE: 8750), (“Dai-ichi Life”) and Protective Life Corporation (NYSE: PL), (“Protective”) today announced that Dai-ichi has received all necessary approvals from regulatory authorities in the United States and Japan for the previously announced proposed acquisition of all of the outstanding shares of common stock of […]

    A.M. Best Assigns Ratings to The Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company, Limited

    {January 23rd, 2015} by A. M. Best

    Hong Kong – A.M. Best has assigned a financial strength rating of A+ (Superior) and an issuer credit rating of “aa-” to The Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company, Limited (DL)(Japan). The outlook assigned to both ratings is stable. The ratings reflect DL’s robust level of risk-adjusted capitalization, improvement in its business profile and a trend of […]

    Bank Annuity Income Rises 8.4% in First 9 Months Of 2014

    {January 23rd, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    Income earned from the sale of annuities at bank holding companies rose 8.4 percent to $2.71 billion in the first three quarters of 2014, compared with the first three quarters of 2013, according to the bank insurance consultancy Michael White Associates. Third-quarter bank holding company annuity commissions rose 2.6 percent to $897.4 million from the […]

    Saving For Retirement ‘Not Main Priority’ Say 4 In 5 Working Americans

    {January 22nd, 2015} by Business Wire

    *** HSBC survey finds that half can’t afford to adequately plan for a comfortable retirement as they juggle growing financial responsibilities and accumulated debt *** NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)– A majority of working-age Americans admit they are not prioritizing retirement planning and place greater importance on more immediate financial concerns, potentially resulting in financial hardship in […]

    Trade Group Wants Annuity Tax Deferrals Maintained

    {January 22nd, 2015} by Ted Knutson

    The Insured Retirement Institute, the largest annuity trade group, laid out its 2015 “wish list” for Congress and federal agencies Tuesday. Highest up on IRI’s lobbying priorities is to encourage retirement savings by keeping tax deferrals for annuities. IRI is also planning efforts to have Congress tweak the tax code to make annuities portable when […]

    Pacific Life Foundation Announces $6 Million 2015 Giving Program

    {January 22nd, 2015} by Business Wire

    NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Pacific Life Foundation announced today, that for a second consecutive year, it will provide $6 million in funding to support the areas of arts and culture; civic, community, and environment; education; and health and human services. The 2015 grants will be directed primarily toward supporting the communities where Pacific Life employees […]

    ‘Too Big To Fail’ On The Agenda Again

    {January 22nd, 2015} by Mary Williams Walsh

    Top financial regulators on Wednesday discussed ways to improve how so-called too-big-to-fail institutions are singled out for closer supervision, but they stopped well short of reversing any designations made so far. The proposals discussed by the Financial Stability Oversight Council included making earlier and fuller disclosures of information and giving companies designated as ”systemically important” […]

    5 Steps to Replicate Your Best Annuity Clients

    {January 21st, 2015} by Gregory Bailey

    Prospecting for new annuity clients is an important part of the job, but finding ideal clients – the ones you feel most comfortable working with and that create the most value for your business – can be challenging. Consider meeting the challenge head-on by adopting a “replication” strategy that focuses your efforts on prospects that […]

    In search of suitability

    {January 21st, 2015} by John Olsen

    Every advisor who sells financial products must wrestle every day with the concept of suitability. We may be (and should be) held accountable for demonstrating that the sales we make are appropriate and that they meet the needs of our clients. But how do we do that? Most, if not all, insurance companies provide tools […]

    Avoiding ethics violations from unlikely sources

    {January 21st, 2015} by John Sullivan

    Ethics cut both ways. That means violations aren’t always fueled by nefarious intentions. Sometimes its laziness, sometimes carelessness and sometimes it stems from an effort to help.  Click HERE to read…

    10 things to know about whole life insurance

    {January 21st, 2015} by Stephan R. Leimberg, Leimberg Information Services,

     Co-written by Robert J. Doyle, Jr. and Keith A. Buck as an excerpt from The Tools & Techniques of Life Insurance Planning, 5th edition: Whole life insurance, as the name implies, is a contract designed to provide protection over the insured’s entire lifetime. There are many types of whole life policies, but the oldest and […]

    NAIC Hires Former Arizona Regulator Urias as International Director

    {January 21st, 2015} by N/A

    The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) has hired Christina Urias, former Arizona insurance commissioner, to the fill newly-created position of managing director of the International Insurance Regulatory Affairs Division. This position reports directly to the CEO Ben Nelson and has responsibility for NAIC international staff in Washington, D.C., New York City and Kansas City, […]

    How one life insurer expects to succeed in 2015

    {January 21st, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch, whersch@SummitProNets.com

    NU Senior Editor Warren S. Hersch recently interviewed Caroline Feeney, president of Prudential’s national sales organization, comprised of 3,000 financial professionals. The interview explored, among other questions, the performance of Prudential’s career distribution system in 2014, the role the unit plays as part of Prudential’s strategic vision, and lessons she’s learned that might benefit other […]

    SIFI Label Puts Industry At Risk

    {January 21st, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – The non-executive chairman of American International Group (AIG) said he doesn’t think MetLife will be successful in challenging a federal agency’s designation as a systemically important financial institution (SIFI), adding that such a designation of an insurance company risks destroying the industry. In comments on CNBC’s Squawk Box, Steve Miller said, “I don’t […]

    Five Annuity Questions You Need to Stop Asking

    {January 21st, 2015} by Christopher Bartolotta

    It’s a new year, and a great time to look at new ways of growing your business. If you’ve chosen to do that by starting to sell fixed and indexed annuities, great; you’ve chosen well, as fixed annuity products are more popular and more consumer-friendly than ever. It’s no secret, though, that there are a […]

    O’Brien Cites Transition, Medical Issue in NAFA Retirement

    {January 21st, 2015} by Linda Koco

    Kim O’Brien’s retirement as president and CEO of National Association for Fixed Annuities (NAFA) surprised a lot of people inside the organization and out, but the 11-year NAFA leader says the time is right. In an interview with InsuranceNewsNet, O’Brien said she needed to attend to a medical issue and, as she reviewed her options, […]

    Investors globally expect a 9 percent return on their portfolio

    {January 21st, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch, whersch@SummitProNets.com

    Seven in ten investors globally are conflicted about the appropriate balance between risk and return. And U.S. investors have higher expectations than others, according to new research. Natixis, a French corporate and investment bank, discloses these findings in its “2014 Global Survey of Individual Investors. Click HERE to read…

    Prison time in Va. for man guilty of nationwide life insurance scam

    {January 21st, 2015} by IFAwebnews Staff

    A California man has been sentenced by a U.S. District Court in Richmond, Va., to spend the nex 6.5 years in prison for his role in a life insurance scheme involving nearly 1,000 people across the country. According to federal prosecutors, 50-year-old Joseph Giovanni Santiago of Los Angeles also was ordered to pay more than […]

    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 […]

    NAFA Announces the Retirement of Kim O’Brien

    {January 20th, 2015} by Janet Terpening, Director of Operations, NAFA

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 20, 2015 NAFA Announces the Retirement of Kim O’Brien WASHINGTON, D.C. – January 20, 2015 -The National Association for Fixed Annuities (NAFA) announces the retirement of Kim O’Brien, President & CEO, from the organization effective Friday, January 16, 2015. An ardent advocate for fixed annuities with 10 years at the helm […]

    Here are the 25 best business jobs for 2015

    {January 20th, 2015} by Nichole Morford

    With our national unemployment rate down to 5.6 percent, job prospects are looking rosier than they have for some time. The U.S. Department of Labor reports that December 2014 saw growth in a number of areas tied to the insurance industry, including professional and business services and healthcare. Better still, it is expected that these […]

    Life Insurance: a dirty word, but a powerful gift

    {January 19th, 2015} by Rebecca Kincaid

    My five-year-old daughter lost her first tooth the other day. I asked her, “What will you do with the money from the tooth fairy?” With a big smile she said, “I’m going to buy an iPad!” Clearly, my sweet girl doesn’t know the tooth fairy didn’t account for inflation and only brought a dollar. Children […]

    SEC Putting Retirement Savings On The Front Burner In 2015

    {January 19th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    The examinations office of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is putting retirement savings on the front burner for 2015. In its annual priority list for examinations, the SEC Office of Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) named matters “of importance to retail investors and investors saving for retirement” as its top priority for […]

    6 Smart Tips For Working With Millennial Financial Advisors

    {January 19th, 2015} by Alix Purcell

    As the leader of a successful financial advisory team your greatest asset is your human capital. And if you’re looking to increase the sustainability of your business it might be wise to look into hiring a younger generation of advisors to help grow and prepare your team for the future. Millennial financial advisors hold incredible […]

    Federal Roundup

    {January 19th, 2015} by NAFA Staff

    Government Relations Committee 2015 Priorities At the National Association for Fixed Annuities (NAFA), our primary mission is to promote the awareness and understanding of fixed annuities. Therefore, a core value proposition for NAFA members is advocacy on issues affecting the fixed annuity industry, supported by: Actively engaging in the legal, legislative and regulatory processes Creating […]

    Opportunities to Help Solve the Retirement Puzzle for the Middle Market

    {January 19th, 2015} by Mark Fitzgerald

    The changing retirement landscape continues to present challenges for Baby Boomers as well as for those already in or nearing retirement. For the long-underserved middle-income market, these obstacles are particularly formidable, and they’re even more overwhelming for Americans whose earnings place them at the lower portion of this demographic. These are the individuals for whom […]

    New Fiduciary Push Faces Longer Odds

    {January 19th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – A coalition of consumer-oriented public interest groups has created a website designed to mobilize public support for a uniform fiduciary standard in anticipation of a renewed push to expand the standard. The initiative by the consumer groups this week is the opening bell of what is expected to be a renewed push by […]

    VAs Move On To FINRA’s Exam Radar

    {January 19th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    Variable annuities are on the examination radar of “product-focused concerns” at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). In its annual letter outlining its of regulatory and exam priorities for 2015, the regulatory organization told its broker/dealer members that it will focus on “sales practice issues with variable annuities — both new purchases and 1035 exchanges.” […]

    KC woman accuses annuities issuer of racketeering

    {January 19th, 2015} by Brianne Pfannenstiel, Kansas City Business Journal

    A Kansas City woman has filed a lawsuit accusing an insurance company of dumping billions of dollars in liabilities into hidden accounts to mislead consumers about its financial stability. Dale Ludwick claims in the lawsuit, which seeks class-action status, that Fidelity & Guarantee Life Insurance Co. sold her an annuity plan that was far riskier […]

    South Dakota gets a new insurance commissioner

    {January 19th, 2015} by Allison Bell

    Larry Deiter has taken over from Merle Scheiber as director of the South Dakota Division of Insurance. Deiter had been serving as interim director since Dec. 4, when Scheiber resigned, according to South Dakota Labor and Regulation Secretary Marcia Hultman. Scheiber resigned for personal reasons, officials said. Scheiber could not immediately be reached for comment. […]

    A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of American Equity Investment Life Holding Company and Its Subsidiaries

    {January 19th, 2015} by A. M. Best

    A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of American Equity Investment Life Holding Company and Its Subsidiaries ——————————————————————————– CONTACTS: Keith Behrmann Financial Analyst (908) 439-2200, ext. 5733 keith.behrmann@ambest.com Rosemarie Mirabella Assistant Vice President (908) 439-2200, ext. 5892 rosemarie.mirabella@ambest.com Christopher Sharkey Manager, Public Relations (908) 439-2200, ext. 5159 christopher.sharkey@ambest.com Jim Peavy Assistant Vice President, Public Relations (908) 439-2200, ext. […]

    Is 2015 the year of the annuity?

    {January 19th, 2015} by David Cruz

    Annuities have long been a polarizing topic. Some advisors say annuities are a core part of their business, while others almost never consider them. Clients who have annuities often buy more, while a vast majority of consumers still aren’t quite sure how they work. Click here to read…

    Cetera factor dampens M&A activity among independent broker-dealers

    {January 19th, 2015} by Bruce Kelly

    Cetera Financial Group chief executive Larry Roth last year articulated a grand ambition, saying he fully expected to have 20,000 brokers on board in five years, or nearly double the 10,100 advisers in the firm’s network. But the broker-dealer, put together in seemingly lightning speed thanks to the checkbook of nontraded REIT czar Nicholas Schorsch, […]

    Life Insurance and Annuities in the US Industry Market Research Report from IBISWorld Has Been Updated

    {January 19th, 2015} by PR Web

    New York, NY (PRWEB) January 19, 2015 According to the Federal Reserve and the American Council of Life Insurers, the Life Insurance and Annuities industry is one of the largest sources of investment capital in the United States. Holding over 18.0% of all US corporate bonds, industry operators are the largest source of bond financing […]

    All This Talk About QLAC What Does it Really Mean?

    {January 19th, 2015} by Gary Baker

    The U.S. Treasury has been making news over the last several months with rule changes that expand the use of deferred income annuities (DIAs) inside retirement plans. The first change was announced in July of 2014, and allows for the deferral of income from a qualified DIA to extend past the mandatory required minimum distribution […]

    Fixed Indexed Annuities Celebrate 20 Years

    {January 19th, 2015} by Jack Marrion, Advantage Compendium Ltd

    The fixed (equity) indexed annuity (FIA) was introduced 20 years ago. Why then? One big reason is that the psychology of the times was right. 1994 had been a rocky year — bond fund returns were poor, the S&P 500 ended the year on a down note, and many stock funds and variable annuities had […]

    LPL advisers’ commissions land in their bank accounts one day late

    {January 19th, 2015} by Bruce Kelly

    LPL Financial failed to pay commissions to a large portion of its 14,000 registered reps and advisers on Thursday due to an error in sending money directly into their bank accounts. “We have identified an operational processing issue that affects the payment of your commission today through ACH direct deposit,” wrote LPL president Robert Moore […]

    This is the No. 1 competitive threat facing independent agents in 2015

    {January 19th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch

    Most of the 38,500 independent agencies in the U.S. are small businesses that generate average annual premiums of between $5 and $6 million, earn commissions of less than $1 million, and employ seven to 12 full-time employees, according to new research. Accenture discloses these findings in a new report on independent agencies, “Evolving to Compete […]

    Rumored Ouster Of Fla. Insurance Commissioner Makes Waves

    {January 19th, 2015} by Charles Elmore, The Palm Beach Post, Fla.

    Jan. 16–Gov. Rick Scott’s office offered no direct comments Thursday about rumors the state’s long-serving insurance commissioner is on the way out, but a spokeswoman noted it’s “good to get fresh ideas and leadership” in a second term. A spokesman for Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater of North Palm Beach said “absolutely not” when […]

    Fidelity & Guaranty Life CEO Lee Launer Announces Retirement Date; Chris Littlefield Named Successor

    {January 19th, 2015} by Fidelity & Guaranty Life

    DES MOINES, Iowa, Jan. 16, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Fidelity & Guaranty Life (“FGL” or “the Company”; NYSE: FGL) announced today that Lee Launer, the Company’s Chief Executive Officer and a member of its Board of Directors, has elected to retire effective as of April 30, 2015 in order to pursue outside interests. Pursuant to its […]

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

    {January 19th, 2015} by A. M. Best

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

    Fidelity & Guaranty Life Names Successor as CEO Retires

    {January 19th, 2015} by David Pilla, news editor, BestWeek: David.Pilla@ambest.com

    DES MOINES, Iowa – Fidelity & Guaranty Life Insurance Co. announced Chief Executive Officer Lee Launer, who is also a member of its board of directors, has elected to retire effective April 30 “to pursue outside interests.” Under the group’s established management succession plan, the company (NYSE: FGL) also announced Christopher J. Littlefield, FGL’s current […]

    Why financial advisors don’t get referrals from CPAs

    {January 16th, 2015} by Anton Anderson

    There is a common misconception in the financial planning industry that CPAs need and want to refer their clients to financial advisors. Although it is true that their clients have needs that financial advisors are the best positioned to help with, the referral model is an unattractive option for CPAs, and as a result, very […]

    Life Insurance Activity Down 0.6% For 2014

    {January 16th, 2015} by PR Newswire Association LLC

    BRAINTREE, Mass., Jan. 16, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Application activity for individually underwritten life insurance closed 2014 off -0.6% YTD from levels observed at year-end 2013, according to the MIB Life Index. December’s activity increased +2.6% year-over-year. First quarter declines of -5.4% (Q1-14/Q1-13) moderated over the second and third quarter, with the fourth quarter showing the […]

    Iowa courts Woodmen, hoping it might move its HQ across the river

    {January 16th, 2015} by Cindy Gonzalez
 and Steve Jordon / World-Herald staff writers

    Iowa is wooing an Omaha icon — Woodmen of the World Life Insurance Society — to get the 125-year-old company to move its headquarters to the other side of the Missouri River. But Nebraska officials are fighting to keep Woodmen in Omaha, where its landmark 30-story skyscraper for decades has been a defining part of […]

    Broker licensing bill signed into law

    {January 15th, 2015} by Kathryn Mayer, kmayer@sbmedia.com

    Brokers’ lives are (hopefully) about to get a little easier. President Obama late Monday signed into law a bill re-establishing the National Association of Registered Agents and Brokers, which aims to ease the ability of brokers to sell insurance in states across the United States. The legislation would set the stage for killing the current […]

    Minnesota Woman Charged in $2M Fake Death Insurance Scam

    {January 15th, 2015} by Associated Press

    Prosecutors in Minnesota have accused a woman of defrauding an insurance company of $2 million in her ex-husband’s staged death and her son is accused of helping cover up the scheme. Irina Vorotinov, 47, is charged with one count of mail fraud and her 25-year-old son, Alkon Vorotinov, is charged with one count of concealing […]

    Who lost the war between term and permanent life insurance?

    {January 15th, 2015} by Patrick Bet-David

    The ’80s were filled with great agent confrontations, which in many cases led to a flat-out street fights between agents with different insurance philosophies. In one corner, you had the “buy term, invest the difference” gang, who were famous for saying they could sell you 10 times the amount of death benefit for the same […]

    Texas, Virgin Islands Name Insurance Commissioners

    {January 15th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

     WASHINGTON – David Mattax, a deputy Texas attorney general for defense litigation, has been named commissioner of the Texas Department of Insurance. Mattax was appointed by Gov. Rick Perry to serve until Feb. 1. At the same time, incoming Gov. Greg Abbott said he would re-name Mattax to the post when he becomes governor. Abbott, […]

    Mitigating sequence of return risk with annuities

    {January 15th, 2015} by George Shave

    According to the Social Security Administration, about 10,000 baby boomers retire every day. That translates to four million people hitting their retirement stride every year. As astounding as these numbers are, many will enter retirement with a false level of confidence about how long their retirement funds will last. According to the EBRI 2012 Retirement […]

    Despite Challenges, Life Insurance Executives See Opportunities In 2015, LOMA Survey Finds

    {January 14th, 2015} by LOMA

    ATLANTA, GA, January 12, 2015 — In 2015, life insurers will continue to face pressure from low interest rates, but despite obstacles, there are a number of market opportunities, according to the LOMA 2015 Life Insurance Industry Forecast. LOMA interviewed a panel of top executives and industry analysts about their predictions on sales, distribution, service, […]

    Five Life Insurance Game-Changers & Cautions For 2015

    {January 14th, 2015} by Brian Greenberg

    As the New Year begins, you should be aware of several significant changes in store for the life insurance industry. Many of the changes are great for both agents and their customers, though there are some pitfalls to avoid. Technology has played a big part in many of the new trends, and the industry has […]

    Hispanics Less Likely To Leave Their Financial Future To Chance

    {January 14th, 2015} by PR Newswire Association LLC

    SPRINGFIELD, Mass., Jan. 14, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — A new survey from Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual) found that compared to the rest of the population, Hispanics are working harder to secure their financial futures. In every way measured in this research, Hispanics are more invested in their own financial future than the general population. […]

    Google Could Add Distribution Source for Insurer, But Questions Remain, Experts Say

    {January 14th, 2015} by Michael Buck, senior associate editor, BestWeek: Michael.Buck@ambest.com

    OLDWICK, N.J. – A Google Inc. foray into the United States online insurance agency space could help insurers by providing another source of distribution, but there is potential for disruption as questions remain about the Internet search giant’s intentions, according to industry experts. “Where and how far could they take this,” said Ellen Carney, an […]

    Ex-Kansas Insurance Agent Gets Prison Sentence for Client, Company Theft

    {January 14th, 2015} by Associated Press

    Prosecutors say a former insurance agent in Kansas has been sentenced to 42 months in prison for stealing from his clients. The U.S. attorney’s office said that 43-year-old Jason Matthew Pennington of Wichita pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud and one count of attempted bank fraud. In his plea, Pennington admitted committing fraud […]

    Susan B. Waters Leaves Behind A Legacy Of Engagement

    {January 14th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    Dr. Susan B. Waters, the late CEO of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA), reached out to as many constituencies as she could in her attempts to strengthen the bonds between the association and its far-flung members. When the news of her untimely death last month began to spread, members came from […]

    MetLife Outside Counsel: Company’s Designation as Non-Bank SIFI a ‘Flawed Process’

    {January 14th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    NEW YORK – MetLife Inc. was designated as a non-bank systemically important financial institution through a “flawed process,” says the company’s outside counsel in the matter. This process “gave decisive weight to boundless speculation and ignored the actual evidence in the record” in the factors the Financial Stability Oversight Council was required by Congress to […]

    Pennsylvania Governor-Elect Taps Former Oregon Administrator as New Insurance Commissioner

    {January 14th, 2015} by Thomas Harman, associate editor, BestWeek: Tom.Harman@ambest.com

    YORK, Pa. – Teresa Miller, a former Oregon Insurance Division administrator who helped the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services implement the Affordable Care Act, has been selected as Pennsylvania’s new insurance commissioner by Gov.-elect Tom Wolf. Miller will succeed outgoing Commissioner Michael Consedine, who was also the president-elect of the National Association of […]

    Interim Commissioner Becomes New South Dakota Director of Insurance

    {January 14th, 2015} by Thomas Harman, associate editor, BestWeek: Tom.Harman@ambest.com

    PIERRE, S.D. – Larry Deiter, who has been serving as interim director of the state Division of Insurance, has officially become the new director. Insurance Director Merle Scheiber announced his resignation in early December after 10 years in office (Best’s News Service, Dec. 9, 2014). “Larry’s leadership capabilities and industry knowledge will allow him to […]

    AIG Names New President for International Life Insurance Business

    {January 14th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    NEW YORK – American International Group has named SV Rangan as president of its international life business as part of its consumer insurance operations. Most recently, Rangan served as founder and director of IFG Worldwide Ltd., a strategy advisory firm that serves clients in the financial services and technology sectors. Before that, he was associated […]

    Woman faked husband’s death to collect $2M, charges say

    {January 14th, 2015} by Tad Vezner, Pioneer Press, St. Paul, Minn.

    Jan. 14–A couple of years after Igor Vorotinov’s wife told his insurer that he died in Moldova, the FBI grew suspicious. The purported death of Igor in October 2011 netted his widow, Irina Vorotinov, reportedly of Minneapolis, Maple Grove and Plymouth, more than $2 million from a life insurance claim. That claim — which included […]

    7 trends that will change the way we sell life insurance in 2015

    {January 13th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch, whersch@SummitProNets.com

    LifeHealthPro Senior Editor Warren S. Hersch recently interviewed Doug French, a New York-based managing principal of the Insurance and Actuarial Advisory Services of Ernst & Young LLP. The interview explored initiatives identified in EY’s “2015 U.S. Life Insurance Outlook” report the professional services firm believes should be top priorities for life insurers in 2015. Click […]

    New Year Brings Changes To Insurance Commissioner Roster

    {January 13th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – Pennsylvania’s insurance commissioner and president-elect of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, Michael Consedine, said he will step down from his state post in order to allow incoming Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf to name his own commissioner. Consedine assumed the title of president-elect of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) on Nov. […]

    MetLife to Sue to Overturn Systemically Risky Designation

    {January 13th, 2015} by Zachary Tracer, Andrew Zajac and Ian Katz

    MetLife Inc. said it will sue in federal court as part of Chief Executive Officer Steve Kandarian’s effort to overturn a finding that the insurer is systemically important. A complaint will be filed today in Washington to oppose the U.S. Financial Stability Oversight Council’s decision, MetLife said in a statement. The largest U.S. life insurer […]

    MetLife sued over ‘shadow insurance’

    {January 13th, 2015} by Bob Van Voris

    (Bloomberg) — MetLife Inc., the U.S. life insurer deemed by regulators as too big to fail, engages in practices that threaten national economic health, according to a lawsuit filed by a policyholder. MetLife, the biggest U.S. life insurer by assets, made misleading statements about its financial condition and overstated the amount of reserves it maintains […]

    Donegan to Remain as Vermont Insurance Commissioner After Shumlin Wins Re-election in Legislature

    {January 13th, 2015} by Thomas Harman, associate editor, BestWeek: Tom.Harman@ambest.com

    MONTPELIER, Vt. – Vermont Insurance Commissioner Susan Donegan will retain her post after state lawmakers settled a razor-thin governor’s race by re-electing Gov. Peter Shumlin. Donegan told Best’s News Service she will be reappointed as commissioner at the Department of Financial Regulation for another two-year term that begins Feb. 28. While Shumlin, a Democrat, finished […]

    96% of financial pros say industry has a trust problem

    {January 12th, 2015} by Danielle Andrus

    Financial services providers agreed almost unanimously that the public doesn’t trust the industry, and they appear to be shouldering most of the responsibility for that lack of trust. According to the CFA Institute’s Global Market Sentiment Survey, 63 percent of professionals — that includes portfolio managers, research consultants, advisors, consultants and C-level executives — said […]

    Another Level of Protection: Survivorship fixed indexed UL

    {January 12th, 2015} by Jason Wellmann

    Within the past five years, the fixed index universal life insurance (FIUL) market has experienced positive annual growth, evidence that the product category is helping to meet consumer demand for those seeking both death benefit protection and the opportunity for their policy to build cash value accumulation from indexed interest. Many consumers are attracted to […]

    AIG Announces Value+ IUL

    {January 12th, 2015} by Business Wire

    Index universal life insurance product offers flexible protection at a market-leading price — plus Optionality® January 12, 2015 09:00 AM Eastern Standard Time HOUSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–American International Group, Inc. (NYSE:AIG) today announced the launch of Value+ IUL, an index universal life insurance product issued by American General Life Insurance Company. The Value+ IUL solution is designed […]

    Who, what, where: January 12, 2015

    {January 12th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    Paradigm shift news roundup: ILTCI, AIG, Insurance Technologies, Phoenix Life, MassMutual, VUE, New York Life, Principal Financial Group, Voya, GMC, LIMRA Click HERE for the update

    Security Benefit Debuts New Crediting Options for Total Value Annuity

    {January 12th, 2015} by GlobeNewswire

    TOPEKA, Kan., Jan. 12, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Security Benefit Life Insurance Company (Security Benefit), a leader in the U.S. retirement savings market, announced today the addition of 1-year and 2-year interest crediting options based on the BNP Paribas High Dividend Plus Index (HD Plus Index) for its Total Value Annuity (TVA). “The Total Value […]

    ILLNOIS: NAFA Summary on the Illinois Van Dyke Matter: Updated 8/3/2016

    {January 12th, 2015} by NAFA

    On December 3, 2014 the Illinois Circuit Court for the Seventh Judicial District (Sangamon County) entered its Order against Richard Lee (Dick) Van Dyke, affirming the final Administrative Order entered against him on April 9, 2014 by the Illinois Department of Securities. The Court found that Mr. Van Dyke was acting as a registered investment […]

    Predicting Interest Rates: Who Got It Right?

    {January 12th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    You’ve got to hand it to those interest rates. They’ve done a number on the “smart money,” which by this time last year pegged rates to start rising as the Federal Reserve cut back on its huge bond-buying program. Interest rates, it turns out, did nothing of the sort. If the smart money doesn’t look […]

    A.M. Best Briefings: U.S. Life/Annuity, Health Rating Outlooks Remains Stable

    {January 12th, 2015} by A. M. Best

    CONTACTS: Stephen Irwin Vice President (908) 439-2200, ext. 5454 stephen.irwin@ambest.com Sally Rosen Assistant Vice President (908) 439-2200, ext. 5820 sally.rosen@ambest.com Christopher Sharkey Manager, Public Relations (908) 439-2200, ext. 5159 christopher.sharkey@ambest.com Jim Peavy Assistant Vice President, Public Relations (908) 439-2200, ext. 5644 james.peavy@ambest.com ——————————————————————————– FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE OLDWICK – JANUARY 06, 2015 A.M. Best has maintained […]

    Hartford CEO Takes on Role as Chairman

    {January 12th, 2015} by Michael Buck, senior associate editor, BestWeek: Michael.Buck@ambest.com

    HARTFORD, Conn. – Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. has given the additional role of chairman to its chief executive officer as the company’s succession plan unfolds earlier than initially mapped out. Christopher J. Swift, 53, who took over in July as CEO, was named chairman effective Jan. 5, the same date Liam E. McGee stepped […]

    Learning retirement lessons from millennials

    {January 12th, 2015} by David Weldon

    It is often said that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but when it comes to retirement planning, baby boomer workers should definitely take a cue from their millennial colleagues. That’s right; today’s youngest workers are very serious about retirement savings and personal investments. They are doing a lot of things right, and […]

    IUL is trending

    {January 12th, 2015} by Robert Bloink, William H. Byrnes

    Recent surveys show that sales of indexed universal life insurance products are trending right now, and while client interest in using indexed universal life as a retirement income source is stronger than ever, heightened regulatory scrutiny is similarly on the rise. As a result, ensuring that this type of product is suitable for your particular […]

    7 steps for women to avoid financial dependence

    {January 12th, 2015} by Daniel Williams

    According to an Allianz report, nearly half of all American women are afraid of losing their financial independence. The report included 2,200 women ages 25 to 75. Of those respondents, 60 percent were the primary breadwinners. “Financially, women’s needs are different from those of men, and the financial industry isn’t meeting them,” says Lance Drucker, […]

    Graying, But Still Golden

    {January 12th, 2015} by News Reporter-Staff News Editor at VerticalNews Health & Science

    RIVERSIDE, Calif. — Getting old doesn’t spell doom when it comes to making important financial decisions, a team of researchers led by a University of California, Riverside assistant professor report in a just published paper. Using credit scores and cognitive ability tests, the researchers found evidence that “crystallized intelligence,” which is gained through experience and […]

    Hartford CEO Swift takes chairman’s role ahead of schedule

    {January 12th, 2015} by Jing Cao, Bloomberg

    (Bloomberg) — Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. Chief Executive Officer Christopher Swift was named to the additional post of chairman in a transition that occurred earlier than the insurer had initially planned. Swift, 53, replaces former CEO Liam McGee, 60, as chairman, according to a statement today from Hartford, the insurer based in the Connecticut […]

    Kicking Dodd-Frank In The Teeth

    {January 11th, 2015} by Gretchen Morgenson

    The 114th Congress has been at work for less than a week, but a goal for many of its members is already evident: a further rollback of regulations put in place to keep markets and Main Street safe from reckless Wall Street practices. The attack began with a bill that narrowly failed in a fast-track […]

    6 things advisors should know about QLACs

    {January 9th, 2015} by John Olsen, Michael Kitces, Curtis Cloke, Gary Mettler

    In July 2014, the IRS released final regulations on QLACs, or Qualifying Longevity Annuity Contracts. These “deferred income annuities” can be purchased by IRAs and qualified plans (within limits) and the contract values will be exempt from RMD rules until age 85, thus allowing even greater benefit of tax deferral. However, the regulations are fairly […]

    A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Securian Financial Group, Inc.’s Subsidiaries

    {January 8th, 2015} by A. M. Best

    Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “aa-” of Minnesota Life Insurance Company (Minnesota Life) and its subsidiary, Securian Life Insurance Company (Securian Life). In addition, A.M. Best has affirmed the FSR of A (Excellent) and ICR of “a” of Securian […]

    A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Subsidiaries of CUNA Mutual Holding Company

    {January 8th, 2015} by A. M. Best

    Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating of A (Excellent) and the 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. (CUMIS) and its wholly owned subsidiary, CUMIS […]

    Allianz to Pay $4.7M to Settle DMF Case

    {January 8th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – Allianz Life has agreed to pay a $4.7 million fine and revise it use of the Social Security Death Master File (DMF) in handling death claims. The settlement with the combined units of Allianz USA mean that subsidiaries of 16 large insurance companies in the United States have reached agreement with state regulators […]

    NARAB II on the Road to the Interstate License Dream

    {January 8th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – Creation of the National Association of Registered Agents and Brokers (NARAB) would represent a long-standing goal of both life and property/casualty insurance agent trade groups. According to the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors, enactment of NARAB-II would create an organization whose specific jurisdiction would be the oversight of insurance producer reciprocal […]

    Symetra Financial Taps White Mountains Advisors Managing Director as Chief Investment Officer

    {January 7th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    BELLVUE, Wash. – Symetra Financial Corp. said it named Mark E. Hunt as chief investment officer and executive vice president, which took effect Jan. 1. In the new position, Hunt is directing the company’s investment policy and strategy, and overseeing Symetra’s roughly $30 billion investment portfolio. He joins Symetra from White Mountains Advisors, an investment […]

    House passes national insurance-agent registry

    {January 7th, 2015} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    In one of its first votes of the new Congress, the House of Representatives revived and overwhelmingly approved Wednesday a bill that would help insurance agents practice in multiple states. By a 416-5 vote, the House passed a measure renewing a federal terrorism insurance program that contained a provision establishing the National Association of Registered […]

    Annuities Stay In Play Even As Pension Funding Drops

    {January 7th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    Although equities hit new highs last year, funding levels at corporate pension plans didn’t. In fact, the levels went down. That’s keeping demand going for annuities that fund pension takeover deals. First, what happened. According to Towers Watson, the defined benefit (DB) pension funded status of the nation’s largest corporate plan sponsors dropped 9 percentage […]

    Voya Financial to Announce Fourth Quarter 2014 Results on February 11

    {January 7th, 2015} by Voya

    NEW YORK, Jan. 7, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA) announced today that it will host an audio webcast of its fourth quarter 2014 earnings conference call on Wednesday, February 11, 2015 from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. (ET). The webcast will follow the issuance of the company’s fourth quarter 2014 earnings press […]

    2015 Annuity Forecast

    {January 6th, 2015} by Steven Morelli, steve.morelli@innfeedback.com.

    At the dawn of 2015, forecasters predict a warming trend for annuities, but warn of a chance of a sudden and deep freeze. The sun has been shining on annuities for the past few years, in fact. Not all products, of course. But consumers are going for some, such as fixed index annuities (FIAs), like […]

    More Women in Industry Leadership: Are We There Yet?

    {January 6th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    When the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA) elected Juli McNeely as its new president last fall, some insurance observers saw it as a turning point. The owner of McNeely Financial Services is more than just the first woman to hold this post in the organization’s 125-year history. She also joins a circle […]

    Prudential enhances life insurance product portfolio to offer consumers more account options and address their financial concerns around living longer

    {January 6th, 2015} by Business Wire

    Prudential’s Individual Life Insurance business has enhanced its PruLife® Founders Plus (Founders Plus) and PruLife® Index Advantage UL (Advantage UL) products. New to Founders Plus, is the Plus 100 Account that credits interest based on 100 percent participation in the performance of the S&P 500® subject to a cap and floor, creating a broader range […]

    Mester says Fed may raise rates within the next six months

    {January 6th, 2015} by Alister Bull

    (Bloomberg) — Broad U.S. economic strength may allow the Federal Reserve to start raising interest rates within the next six months and the data will determine the pace of policy tightening thereafter, a regional Fed chief said. Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland President Loretta Mester said in an interview with Fox Business Network today that […]

    Ex-Financial Advisor Wants To Take Back Guilty Plea

    {January 6th, 2015} by Keith Gushard, kgushard@meadvilletribune.com.

    Jan. 06–A former financial adviser who pleaded guilty in Crawford County Court of Common Pleas last year to charges he stole money from an elderly Meadville woman now wants to withdraw his guilty plea. David E.A. Seagren, 70, verbally asked to withdraw his guilty plea before he was to be sentenced Monday morning in Crawford […]

    NAILBA Announces 2015 Board Of Directors

    {January 6th, 2015} by NAILBA

    (Fairfax, Va.)— David Long, Senior Vice President of Sacramento-based CPS Sacramento/Long Insurance Services has been named Chairman of the National Association of Independent Life Brokerage Agencies (NAILBA) for 2015. “David has been part of NAILBA’s volunteer framework for more than fifteen years,” said NAILBA CEO Jack Chiasson. “As we embark on an ambitious Strategic Plan, […]

    6 top tax changes for 2015

    {January 6th, 2015} by Dan Berman

    Except for the hubbub over the Tax Extenders bill being passed by Congress, the biggest news of the fall concerning taxes turned out to be a story on a parody website claiming refunds would be delayed until Oct. 15. That didn’t stop the social media universe from obsessing over the idea that the Obama administration […]

    Penn Mutual Life Renames Investment Advisor Unit

    {January 6th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    HORSHAM, Pa. – Penn Mutual Life Insurance Co. has renamed its registered investment adviser unit to Penn Mutual Asset Management with a focus on managing the $20 billion in assets held in its own general account and within its Penn Series Funds. Formerly called Independence Capital Management Inc., the firm has served as an investment […]

    ALM Acquires Summit Professional Networks

    {January 6th, 2015} by Globe Newswire

    NEW YORK, Jan. 5, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — ALM, a leader in specialized industry news and information, today announced a deal to acquire Summit Professional Networks, the publisher of Investment Advisor and several prominent insurance and legal publications including National Underwriter and InsideCounsel. The deal also includes Judy Diamond Associates, a market-leading provider of prospecting […]

    SEC approves Finra background check rule

    {January 6th, 2015} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    Expanded requirement faces some industry pushback, but could help firms avoid rogue hires The Securities and Exchange Commission has approved a Finra proposal that requires brokerages to strengthen the background reviews they conduct on new hires. Under the new requirement, firms must adopt written procedures to verify the accuracy and completeness of a broker’s registration […]

    Indexed universal life: So zero’s your hero?

    {January 6th, 2015} by Steve Savant, Ash Brokerage Corporation

    It may not be what you say that get’s you in trouble; it’s what you leave out that may land you in litigation. Over the last 30 years, I have relentlessly promoted life insurance’s tax-advantaged income. And although I am generally a product agnostic, I have a real appreciation for indexed universal life (IUL), when […]

    Forethought Promotes Veteran, Transamerica Hires New DB Expert

    {January 6th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    Forethought Life announced it has promoted David Mullen to head the company’s preneed or final expense business. Mullen has been with the company for 16 years and was former general counsel of U.S. Financial Life Insurance. He has served as Forethought’s director of corporate development, general counsel and chief administrative officer. “We are as devoted […]

    Tax changes for 2015: What to expect

    {January 6th, 2015} by Tom Nawrocki

    The New Year brings with it changes to tax rates that are indexed for inflation or otherwise set to adjust each year. Many estate planning clients will want to consider adjusting their plans based on the shifts in the tax rates. And all of them will appreciate knowing what changes the IRS has in store […]

    Why Indexed Universal Life Insurance Can Be a Good Retirement Investment

    {January 5th, 2015} by Ellen Change

    NEW YORK (MainStreet) — Indexed universal life insurance policies can serve as another investment option in your retirement portfolio and allow you to accumulate cash on a tax-deferred basis. The funds you allocate for an indexed universal life policy (or IUL) allow you to direct the premium into one or more index allocation options such […]

    Digital destiny: What your agency needs to do right now to become more competitive

    {January 5th, 2015} by Shawn Moynihan with Melissa Hillebrand

    Independent agencies boast a long history and culture of being highly effective at sales. However, that competency isn’t always matched in their marketing efforts or the agency-technology decisions that are made. To remain competitive, agencies must now do two things. Click here to read…

    Hartford CEO Swift Assumes Chairman’s Role from McGee

    {January 5th, 2015} by Jing Cao

    Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. Chief Executive Officer Christopher Swift was named to the additional post of chairman in a transition that occurred earlier than the insurer had initially planned. Swift, 53, replaces former CEO Liam McGee, 60, as chairman, according to a statement Monday from Hartford, the insurer based in the Connecticut city of […]

    RIAs Need To Invest In Marketing And Business Development

    {January 2nd, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    The first step to solving a problem is admitting you have one in the first place, and many registered investment advisors (RIAs) admit to having this problem: They don’t invest in the ingredients that will ensure the growth of their companies. RIAs know that growth is critical to their success, yet only 5 percent of […]

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