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Archive for November 2015

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  • Indexed Annuity Sales Continue To Break Records In 3Q

    {November 30th, 2015} by Press Release

    Pleasant Hill, Iowa. November 25th, 2015– Fifty-five indexed annuity carriers participated in the 73rd edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report, representing 99.8% of indexed annuity production. Total third quarter sales were $13.8 billion! Third quarter indexed annuity sales were up more than 13.0% when compared to the previous quarter, and up nearly 21.0% when […]

    Wink, Inc. Releases Third Quarter, 2015 Indexed Sales Results

    {November 30th, 2015} by Wink, Inc

      INDEXED INSURANCE SALES CONTINUE TO BREAK RECORDS Wink, Inc. Releases Third Quarter, 2015 Indexed Sales Results Pleasant Hill, Iowa. November 25th, 2015– Fifty-five indexed annuity carriers participated in the 73rd edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report, representing 99.8% of indexed annuity production. Total third quarter sales were $13.8 billion! Third quarter indexed annuity […]

    Fixed-indexed annuities soar in popularity

    {November 30th, 2015} by Greg Iacurci

    Adviser Jo-Ann Holst’s client, a woman in her mid-60s with $440,000 in savings, didn’t want to sink her entire retirement nest egg into the stock market. Click HERE to view the full story via InvestmentNew; registration required         An FIA issued today would be expected to return approximately 3.8-4.8% on average over […]

    Women Advisors Tell Stories Of Working Their Way Through Loss

    {November 30th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    Anne Gongos, the widow of business owner John Gongos, told a packed room of advisors how grateful she was for life insurance. She told her story during National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors Annual Conference in October. She told the group that she lost her husband to melanoma when he was only 51. Click […]

    These are the top 5 trends shaping the annuity market

    {November 26th, 2015} by Gerry Murtagh

    Within the annuity industry, increased longevity, the imminent retirement of the baby boomers, continued low interest rates, volatility in financial markets and, of course, the proposed DOL fiduciary rule remain the top concerns. Market and demographic trends underscore the stark reality that more people need to generate more guaranteed income across longer-term retirement horizons. This […]

    THIRD QUARTER 2015 INDEXED INSURANCE SALES

    {November 25th, 2015} by Sheryl J. Moore

      Indexed Annuity Wink’s Sales & Market Report, 3rd Quarter 2015 shows sales for the third quarter of 2015 were $13,872 million, compared with sales of $11,488 million for the third quarter of 2014. Third quarter indexed annuity sales were up more than 13.00% when compared to the previous quarter, and up nearly 21.00% when […]

    A gift for the heart: “Pay it forward” with holiday marketing: BLOG

    {November 25th, 2015} by Joel Magruder

    My practice celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2012, and I wanted to do something a little different for my clients to celebrate. All of us at the firm agreed that our lives have been very blessed and it was time to share our good fortune with others. We asked some of our industry partners to […]

    Anger Turns to Resignation in Face of DOL Rule

    {November 25th, 2015} by Cyril Tuhy

    When the U.S. Department of Labor came out with its long-awaited conflict-of-interest rule in April, some advisors, agents and broker-dealers feared the worst. Why us, they asked? What is it about what we do that regulators want to change the way we go about our professional lives? Click HERE to view article    Wink’s Note: InsuranceNewsNet […]

    Ex-Wife Gets None of Ex’s Life Insurance, Court Rules

    {November 25th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    A deceased life insurance policyholder’s ex-wife has no right to any portion of the proceeds because the man’s death voids a family court order to split the cash surrender value of the policy, the Rhode Island Supreme Court has ruled. Citing precedent, the court ruled in Loppi v. United Investors Life Inc. that any court […]

    Advisor Headcount Ticks Up But A Decline Looms

    {November 25th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    A roller coaster ride is in store where advisor headcount is concerned, with the numbers inching upward but then predicted to drop significantly. That’s according to a new Cerulli Associates study, which warned of a “succession cliff” looming in the distance. The total advisor headcount inched upward in 2014 for the first time in nine […]

    Agent Who Victimized Two Senior Citizens With $2 Million Annuities Scam Faces 30 Years in Prison

    {November 25th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – A financial planner who authorities say churned two senior citizens’ annuities portfolios into $2 million in illegal gains could be going to prison for up to 30 years. Joseph Anthony Mele, 30, of Ventura, pleaded no contest to multiple felony counts including grand theft by false pretenses, theft from an elder […]

    Are You an Insurance ‘Expert?’

    {November 25th, 2015} by Christopher J. Boggs

    Have you ever noticed that true experts don’t refer to themselves, or even consider themselves, experts? However, others see them as and proclaim them to be experts. True experts worry more about what they don’t know than what they do know, continually looking for ways to fill their knowledge gap. Self-proclaimed experts ignore the breadth […]

    FA Competition Shifting into High Gear

    {November 25th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    The fixed annuity side of the business appears to be in high competitive gear as compared to the variable annuity side. This is based on a review of year-to-date sales rankings for the top 20 individual annuity carriers for third quarter 2015 — data provided by the LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute. In recent years, those quarterly reports […]

    A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of EquiTrust Life Insurance Company

    {November 25th, 2015} by Best's News Service

    Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of B++ (Good) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of ‘bbb+’ of EquiTrust Life Insurance Company (EquiTrust) (Chicago, IL). All ratings have a stable outlook. The affirmation reflects adequate levels of risk-adjusted capitalization, stable investment spreads and good asset-liability matching. A.M. Best expects that […]

    Penn Mutual Names New President-COO

    {November 25th, 2015} by Frank Klimko, Washington correspondent, BestWeek: frank.klimko@ambest.com

    HORSHAM, Pa. – Penn Mutual Life Insurance Co. has named David O’Malley as the company’s president and chief operating officer. The promotion is effective Jan. 1. O’Malley started as an intern in the company’s investment department. He joined Penn Mutual in 1994, responsible for overseeing fixed income portfolios and managing various sectors of the bond […]

    Happy Thanksgiving

    {November 24th, 2015} by Wink RockStars

    So much to be thankful for this year… but most importantly, we are thankful for YOU! Many blessings from the Wink family!  Happy Thanksgiving!    Wink will be closed November 26th- 27th to enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday with our families.

    Carriers Compete With Complexity, Leading to ‘Arms Race’ Concerns

    {November 24th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    A potential arms race may be ahead for fixed index annuity (FIA) business, similar to that in the variable annuity market a decade ago, according to analysts at A.M. Best.   The FIA business is a large and growing segment within the U.S. annuity market, the A.M. Best researchers said in a new survey of […]

    4 of the biggest challenges facing the insurance industry (and how to overcome them)

    {November 24th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    The opening general session at NAILBA 34, which began November 18 and ends November 20 in Orlando, Fla., got off to an energetic start. NAILBA 2015 chairman David Long spoke about the association’s partnerships, community outreach, the challenges the insurance industry is facing and more. Click HERE  life-changing challenges  

    New NAIC President Huff Says NAIC Will Focus on Consumer Protection in 2016

    {November 24th, 2015} by Thomas Harman, Washington Bureau manager, BestWeek: Tom.Harman@ambest.com

    NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – Missouri Insurance Commissioner John Huff, the new president of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, said his administration will focus on protecting consumers in the insurance marketplace in 2016. The NAIC elected its officers by acclamation at the end of its Fall National Meeting in Maryland on Nov. 22. Their one-year […]

    Most Gen Xers paralyzed by retirement fears

    {November 24th, 2015} by Marlene Y. Satter

    GenXers think we’re in the midst of a retirement crisis. But that doesn’t mean they’re taking action to protect their own interests. In fact, according to the “Generations Apart” study, commissioned by Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, despite the fact that 92 percent of those aged 35–48 believe in the existence of a […]

    Higher interest rates: Don’t wish for too much, too fast

    {November 24th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch

    There’s broad consensus that the Federal Reserve will deliver an interest rate hike at its December 16 policy meeting, and that life insurers will at long last get some relief from historically low yields. Often not discussed among industry-watchers, however, are the risks insurers face in a rising interest rate environment, specifically one where rates […]

    3 insurance industry views from Moody’s windows

    {November 24th, 2015} by Allison Bell

    Moody’s Investors Servicesbrought reporters to its offices in downtown Manhattan Wednesday to explain how its analysts see the insurance world. Moody’s and other rating agencies are still recovering from the firestorm of regulatory scrutiny they passed through during the Great Recession. But what analysts at the firms think can still have a big effect on insurers, producers […]

    A.M. Best Upgrades Allianz Life to A+ Superior Rating

    {November 24th, 2015} by Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America

    MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz Life®) announced that A.M. Best upgraded the company’s financial strength rating to an A+ from the A rating it has had for the past ten years, and upgraded its issuer credit ratings from a+ to aa-. At the same time, the financial credit rating company affirmed […]

    Who Needs Life Insurance More: James Bond… or You?

    {November 24th, 2015} by Life Happens

    Five Times as Many Americans Think It’s Bond; Survey Finds Majority of Americans Unaware of Who Needs it Most Arlington, Va. – Nov. 23, 2015 – Americans wrongly believe that life insurance is better suited for someone who leads an independent, risky and adventurous life, than for a working father who earns the primary source of income […]

    Final DOL rule could place indexed annuities under variable umbrella

    {November 24th, 2015} by ROBERT BLOINK, WILLIAM H. BYRNES

    The proposed fiduciary rules from the Department of Labor (DOL) are complex and far from settled, but reports from recent meetings on the issue indicate that additional classes of annuity products may be pulled under the umbrella of the new, more strict, fiduciary standards.  Advisors who offer annuities need to be aware of the proposed revisions […]

    IRI Posthumously Honors Jim Mumford

    {November 24th, 2015} by Insured Retirement Institute

    Former Iowa Regulator Recognized for Efforts to Advance Retirement Security Initiatives   WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) today posthumously honored Jim Mumford, former First Deputy Commissioner of the Iowa Insurance Division, as a 2015 recipient of the IRI Champion of Retirement Security Award. The award recognizes Mr. Mumford’s efforts, during his 10-year […]

    Allianz aims to add $6.9 billion of premiums, focus on top units

    {November 24th, 2015} by Nicholas Comfort, Carolynn Look

    (Bloomberg) — Allianz SE, Europe’s largest insurer, aims to generate an additional 6.5 billion euros ($6.9 billion) in annual premiums as the company focuses on its most profitable businesses. Allianz wants to achieve annual earnings per share growth of 5 percent on average from 2016 to 2018, the insurer said in a statement on Tuesday. […]

    A.M.BestTV: As Fixed-Indexed Annuity Market Grows, So Does Risk Profile

    {November 24th, 2015} by AM Best

    CONTACTS:   Lee McDonald Group Vice President, Publication and News Services (908) 439-2200, ext. 5561 lee.mcdonald@ambest.com   FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE OLDWICK – NOVEMBER 04, 2015 This last in a series of “First Monday” episodes for November spotlights a discussion with A.M. Best Assistant Vice President Rosemarie Mirabella and Financial Analyst Frank Walko, who talk about […]

    NAILBA 34: A world of opportunities

    {November 24th, 2015} by Daniel Williams

    “The marketplace is about to experience a milestone disrupter,” according to Mammen Verghis of Prudential.  In a recent email exchange, Verghis stated that, “By 2020, multicultural consumers will account for nearly 4 in 10 of the U.S. population; by 2050, they will be the majority U.S. population.”  On Friday, November 20, NAILBA 34 attendees will learn […]

    Insurance industry keeps up charitable giving campaigns

    {November 24th, 2015} by Allison Bell

    Low interest rates and regulatory changes are forcing many people in the life and health insurance industry to work longer hours for less pay, and much less certainty about the future, these days. But, in spite of the challenges, insurers, industry groups and distributors have been forging ahead with charitable giving campaigns. The National Association […]

    Indexed Annuities: Past, Present and Future

    {November 24th, 2015} by Mike Janky

    From the bull run of the ‘lost decade’ to the gyrations of 2015, the FIA continues to adapt Indexed annuities have been around now for two decades. We have watched these products evolve from a relatively simple design from two carriers in 1995 to now hundreds of carriers offering an array of indexing strategies including […]

    Life insurance as long-term care: doing double duty

    {November 23rd, 2015} by David McKnight

    A long-term care event may very well be the single most devastating event that could befall your clients in retirement. It can be so devastating that, from a financial perspective, your clients could be better off dying than needing long-term care (and I mean that in the most loving way possible).  Click HERE to see how I break this […]

    NAILBA 34: A world of opportunities

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Daniel Williams

    “The marketplace is about to experience a milestone disrupter,” according to Mammen Verghis of Prudential.  In a recent email exchange, Verghis stated that, “By 2020,multicultural consumers will account for nearly 4 in 10 of the U.S. population; by 2050, they will be the majority U.S. population.”  On Friday, November 20, NAILBA 34 attendees will learn […]

    A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Global Atlantic Financial Group Limited’s Subsidiaries

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Best's News Service

    Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A- (Excellent) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “a-” of the life insurance subsidiaries of Global Atlantic Financial Group Limited (Global Atlantic) (Hamilton, Bermuda). Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the ICR of “bbb-” and the issue rating on $150 million 8.625% senior […]

    A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Symetra Financial Corporation and its Subsidiaries

    {November 23rd, 2015} by AM Best

    Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating of A (Excellent) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “a+” of Symetra Life Insurance Company and its subsidiary, First Symetra National Life Insurance Company of New York (New York, NY). Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the ICR of “bbb+” and existing issue ratings ofSymetra […]

    Carl Icahn Says AIG CEO Unwilling to Break up Company

    {November 23rd, 2015} by The Associated Press

    Activist investor Carl Icahn is putting more pressure on American International Group Inc. to break itself into three separate companies. Icahn said Monday on his website that after speaking with AIG CEO Peter Hancock several times, Hancock remains unwilling to split the insurer up. Icahn vowed to reach out to shareholders directly and said he […]

    Voya Reminds Parents of Babies Born on October 19, 2015 to Sign Up and Receive Their $500 Investment Gift

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Voya

    Class of 2015′ is eligible for a $500 mutual fund investment through Voya Born to Save® program — but must be enrolled by December 18, 2015 According to survey, one-third of new parents would prefer a financial gift for their child instead of traditional presents this holiday season   NEW YORK, Nov. 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ […]

    Marijuana use of growing concern to life insurers

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch

    As adoption of medical and recreational marijuana skyrockets nationwide, life insurers remain divided about how to rate policy applicants, in part because of the uncertain state of the science underpinning medical testing and the lack of research that might link marijuana use to increased deaths. This was a running theme of a panel discussion at NAILBA34, […]

    The life insurance strategy both U.S. and Foreign National clients might want

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Laura Morrison

    Diversification is one of the guiding principles of financial planning to help mitigate risk. No single asset class or market performs best in all economic environments.  If financial planners diversify a customer’s investment portfolio, why wouldn’t that same principle carry over to managing a client’s life insurance and supplemental retirement assets?  Click HERE to read […]

    4 more great Dave Ramsey myths, debunked

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Michael Markey

      I’m not quite sure why this has been the hardest column for me to write. Over the last two weeks I’ve become a serial procrastinator. I’ve started writing this a dozen times or so, in my head at least, but I couldn’t really make progress even though I already had the subject pinned down. […]

    AIG Advisor Group for sale: Who’s likely to buy it?

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Janet Levaux

    News of the possible sale of yet another large group of independent broker-dealers emerged Tuesday, when AIG disclosed that it had been contacted by parties with interest in its Advisor Group. “AIG is conducting a strategic review of all its priorities as part of its stated goal of focusing on its core services and reducing the […]

    What you need to know about fee-only annuities: Opinion

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Mike Patton

    Annuities are one of those securities that elicit strong opinions. Love them or despise them, in certain situations they can be an important component of a client’s portfolio. Whatever your belief, the efficacy of annuities is not the subject of this post. Instead, we will focus on a little-known aspect of fee-only variable annuities and […]

    What’s so great about IUL?

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Tom Martin

    As an avid woodworker, I have a tool collection that would be the envy of Bob Villa. My workshop contains some very highly specialized tools accurate to 1/100th of an inch. This kind of precision is necessary for things like cutting dovetail joints, but not everything I do requires that kind of rigor. Some of […]

    What We Can Learn from Irate Clients

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Joe Curcillo

    Mr. Money is on the phone… he is angry and demanding your attention Boss Deborah is sitting in her office reviewing monthly reports as she listens to routine bustling of her staff. Suddenly, she hears a single voice amidst the regular noise. It is Mary, her secretary, attempting to get a word in as she deals […]

    The insurance advocate

    {November 23rd, 2015} by Lori Widmer

    Greg Nemec finds himself in an unlikely position these days — filling the role of insurance advocate. What’s unlikely about his advocacy is that Nemec, regional director at American Financial Network in Parsippany, NJ, never saw himself in the insurance business. In fact, insurance was the last place Nemec thought he’d be. Click HERE to read […]

    FIA Terms Tighten Despite Strong Sales

    {November 20th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    Sales of fixed index annuities (FIAs) exploded in the third quarter, but insurance experts and analysts are noting a trend: FIAs are neither as cheap nor generous as they used to be. To find out, you have to read the fine print buried deep in the annuity contract. It’s the kind of reading that only […]

    Financial Illiteracy Alive and Well…with a Gender Gap To Boot

    {November 20th, 2015} by Standard and Poor's

    S&P Survey finds major deficiencies globally in understanding of savings and borrowing WASHINGTON, Nov. 19, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — In one of the most extensive measurements of global financial literacy to date, the Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services Global Financial Literacy Survey (S&P Global FinLit Survey) released today finds that two-thirds of adults worldwide are not […]

    Fidelity & Guaranty Posts Drop in Fiscal Fourth-Quarter Net on Investments

    {November 20th, 2015} by David Pilla, news editor, BestWeek: David.Pilla@ambest.com

    DES MOINES, Iowa – Fidelity & Guaranty Life Insurance Co.’s fiscal fourth-quarter net income fell to $30 million from $39 million a year earlier as the life and annuities firm reported net investment losses of $112 million versus gains of $40 million a year earlier. Net income for the fiscal year ended Sept. 30 fell […]

    Principle-Based Reserving for Life Insurers Just Three States From Ratification

    {November 20th, 2015} by Thomas Harman, Washington Bureau manager, BestWeek: Tom.Harman@ambest.com

    NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – Principle-based reserving for life insurers is close to becoming a reality, as adoption by only three states may be separating it from becoming a national standard, according to the latest count by the American Council of Life Insurers. The data was presented to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ principle-based review […]

    Indexed Annuities Have Record-Breaking 3Q

    {November 19th, 2015} by LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute

    WINDSOR, Conn., Nov. 19, 2015—U.S. annuity sales totaled $60.6 billion in the third quarter 2015, improving 4 percent compared with prior year, according to LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute’s third quarter U.S. Individual Annuities Sales Survey “Despite high volatility, a significant market correction and lower interest rates, total annuity sales – driven by substantially strong fixed-rate […]

    4 ambitious goals NAILBA is looking to accomplish in 2016

    {November 19th, 2015} by Emily Holbrook

    At the NAILBA 34 conference  in Orlando, the two-hour opening general session offered up many insights into the current happenings of the National Association of Independent Life Brokerage Agencies (NAILBA). David Long, who served as the 2015 chairman of NAILBA, made it clear to the 1,000-plus in attendance that it was supporters of organizations like NAILBA […]

    Fixed Index Annuities: Protecting Against the Longevity Risk

    {November 18th, 2015} by Eric Taylor

    While advances in modern medicine and healthier lifestyles are leading to longer lifespans and more time spent in retirement, these advances are creating another reality: the distinct possibility that some Americans could outlive their money.   According to the Social Security Administration, one out of every four 65-year-olds today will live past age 90, and […]

    Advisors: Room To Improve Materials from Providers

    {November 18th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    Many financial advisors are only “modestly satisfied” with materials furnished by broker-dealers, asset managers and insurance carriers, according to a consultant’s report. There’s room for improvement when it comes to the resources’ usability, comprehension, timeliness and objectivity, the report found. Demand for unvarnished materials is also expected to increase as advisors stretch their acumen in […]

    Industry Leaders Share Insights:

    {November 18th, 2015} by NAFA Staff

    NAFA Annuity Outlook magazine staff asked several industry executives to share their insights on this question: From your perspective, how will 2015 sales, product and/or regulatory developments impact the new year ahead – for the industry at large and/or specifically for financial professionals? Sheryl Moore, president and CEO of Moore Market Intelligence, an indexed product […]

    Women Need To Get Up To Speed On Annuities

    {November 18th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    Not even one-quarter of American women surveyed are knowledgeable about fixed or variable annuities, according to a new study from Insured Retirement Institute (IRI). The annuities are not the only source of mystery for women. According to the study, women are also shy on knowledge about corporate bonds, exchange-traded funds, government bonds, bond funds, individual […]

    2015 in Review

    {November 17th, 2015} by Maureen James

    A Look at Regulatory Issues and Their Impact on Insurance Carriers and Distributors It has been another successful year for life insurance and annuity sales – and the year isn’t over yet! Consumers continue to appreciate the financial protection and income benefits these products provide as they plan for their retirement, which has helped sales […]

    Protective Life Launches Online Financial Learning Center

    {November 17th, 2015} by Business Wire

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Protective Life Insurance Company, a subsidiary of Protective Life Corporation, today announced it has developed a new online portal for financial education. The “Protective Life Learning Center” combines simple interactive tools with more than 500 informative articles and videos. Topics range from basic budget planning to understanding different types of life insurance and annuities. […]

    InsuranceNewsNet and NAILBA to Release Results of Independent Life Brokerage Study

    {November 17th, 2015} by InsuranceNewsNet

    Report will help BGAs gain insights into producer needs and their relationship with BGAs. November 16, 2015 – InsuranceNewsNet and the National Association of Independent Life Brokerage Agencies (NAILBA) have partnered on a comprehensive survey of independent insurance producers. The study is designed to examine the relationship between brokerage general agencies (BGAs) and the agents […]

    How annuity advisors are meeting client needs

    {November 17th, 2015} by JAMIE E. GREEN, WARREN S. HERSCH, EMILY HOLBROOK

    When making product recommendations, advisors place great emphasis on the reputation and financial strength of a product’s parent company. In fact, 65 percent of advisors say that aspect is extremely important, while only 21 percent say it is somewhat important. Other important considerations for advisors when recommending a fixed indexed annuity product to a client […]

    ‘Tis The Season of Giving? New Survey Says Perhaps Not

    {November 17th, 2015} by PRNewswire

    The Holiday Season May Not Get Many Americans into the Giving Spirit BLOOMINGTON, Ill., Nov. 17, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Many people associate the holiday season with giving, but contrary to popular belief, 71 percent of Americans say the holidays have no impact on their contributions to charitable organizations, according to the latest COUNTRY Financial Security Index. […]

    8 characteristics of a good insurance executive

    {November 17th, 2015} by LIMORE ZILBERMAN

    Within the insurance industry, we take certain attributes for granted: diligence, detail orientation, a fundamental understanding of data.   However, it’s rare to take a step back and examine the actual psychological characteristics of insurance executives — how they think, how they make decisions, how they approach interactions with others.  What is the psychological profile of an […]

    More Life Carriers Raise Rates On Older Blocks Of Business

    {November 17th, 2015} by Rob Sussman

    In my Nov. 6 article, I addressed the issue of life insurance carriers raising cost of insurance (COI) rates to egregious levels. Since I wrote that article, the number of carriers raising rates on older blocks of business has increased to six, with Genworth and Prudential PLC (Jackson National’s parent) joining the list. It appears […]

    Heads in the Sand, Gen Xers Failing to Secure their Financial Future

    {November 17th, 2015} by Business Wire

    MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The majority (92%) of Generation X (age 35-48), feel that Americans are in the midst of a national retirement crisis, and an even greater number (94%), believe it’s critical to build their own financial security in retirement, according to the Generations ApartSM* study, commissioned by Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz Life®). […]

    Life Insurance Sales Jump 11 Percent at New York Life Through the Third Quarter of 2015

    {November 17th, 2015} by Business Wire

    NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–New York Life, the largest life insurer in the US, today announced an 11 percent increase in sales of individual recurring premium life insurance through agents for the first three quarters of 2015, and a four percent increase in the number of policies sold through agents. These strong results reflect growth across the […]

    Fidelity & Guaranty Life Elects to Discontinue Conference Calls for Quarterly and Annual Results

    {November 17th, 2015} by PRNewswire

    DES MOINES, Iowa, Nov. 16, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Fidelity & Guaranty Life (NYSE: FGL ) announced today that it has elected to discontinue future conference calls to discuss quarterly and annual results following the announcement, on November 9, 2015, that FGL has entered into a definitive merger agreement with Anbang Insurance Group Co., Ltd.  Therefore, […]

    MassMutual Announces Acquisition Of Viability Advisory Group

    {November 17th, 2015} by PRNewswire

    Strategic acquisition provides new tools to help financial advisors quantify the value of employer-sponsored retirement plans Viability founder, Hugh O’Toole, rejoining MassMutual to lead new offering for financial advisors ENFIELD, Conn., Nov. 16, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — MassMutual today announced it has acquired substantially all the assets of Viability Advisory Group as part of a strategy to […]

    Preview: How to get Gen Y to buy insurance

    {November 17th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    Type the word “millennial” in Google and you’ll get about 17 million results. Type “Generation Y” and there are about 148 million results. It’s a fact: people are talking about this generation. Click HERE to read article 

    Why the insurance industry needs digital marketing

    {November 17th, 2015} by Nichole Morford

    Social media is no longer a “nice to have” for any agency that wants to stay competitive in today’s fast-paced marketplace. Having an online presence is critical, whether you are targeting millennials or seniors. The right social strategy will make your lead gen efforts more effective. It will multiply your number of qualified prospects. And […]

    M&A among insurers pegged at $200 billion-plus thru 3Q 2015

    {November 17th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch

    You may have noticed that the pace of mergers and acquisitions among life and health insurers has picked up noticeably in recent months. Since June, Anthem has announced plans to merge with Cigna, a $54 billion deal that would create a colossus — the largest managed health care provider in the U.S. In the life […]

    Change is on Everyone’s Mind

    {November 17th, 2015} by Chip Anderson

    Message from NAFA Last month, NAFA had the privilege of hosting 190 of its members from companies and vendors representing all aspects of fixed annuity distribution at the historic Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables, FL. Members from across the country connected for the seventh annual Annuity Distribution Summit. The Summit provided a unique forum for […]

    State Roundup

    {November 17th, 2015} by Pam Heinrich

    TRIPPING THE FIDUCIARY LINE: Now What Happens? If the Department of Labor’s proposed fiduciary rule is adopted as it is currently written, fiduciary status and duties would be triggered for most annuity contract transactions that involve Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) plans and IRAs. Likewise, if the fiduciary (here the insurance agent, broker, or […]

    A Closer Look at Income

    {November 17th, 2015} by Rod Mims

    Second part in a two part series on accumulation and income strategies. Last issue, we explored the value of fixed indexed annuities as accumulation vehicles. Here we’ll look at income riders, which according to LIMRA are now included in over two-thirds of indexed annuity sales.* A client couple, call them Ralph and Alice, are in […]

    Fiduciary Bill Would Block DOL From IRAs

    {November 16th, 2015} by John Hilton

    Legislation introduced by a pair of congressmen would transfer regulatory oversight of IRAs to the Department of Revenue. The Retirement Choice Protection Act, introduced by Reps. Mike Kelly, R-Pa, and Sam Johnson, R-Texas, would effectively derail the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule. Last month, the pair co-authored a letter, co-signed by 103 House members, to Labor […]

    Retirement Industry Braces for a Final Ruling as DOL Public Hearing Marathon Concludes

    {November 16th, 2015} by Cliff Andrews

    Congress returned from its annual August recess, but the fiduciary debate raged on in Washington, D.C. as the Department of Labor (DOL) conducted four days of public hearings the second week of August. The hearings consisted of 20 panels comprised of over 60 witnesses who presented a mixed bag of testimony. Panels were arranged with […]

    Pacific Life Introduces 13 New Investment Options

    {November 16th, 2015} by Pacific Life

    Media Contact: Marisa Schaeffer (949) 219-3243 Pacific Life Introduces 13 New Investment Options Pacific Life’s Variable Annuity Lineup Now Includes More Than 100 Investment Options Newport Beach, Calif. (November 13, 2015) – Pacific Life announces the addition of 13 new investment options to its variable annuity products to provide an even broader array of portfolio […]

    Knights Of Columbus Surpasses $100B Of Life Insurance

    {November 16th, 2015} by The Winchester Star (MA)

    The Knights of Columbus surpassed $100 billion of life insurance in force, a milestone in the Catholic fraternal benefit society’s mission to protect the future of Catholic families. This milestone was achieved despite continuing adverse conditions affecting the insurance industry. Established in 1882, by a young Catholic priest, the organization — which offers its line […]

    MetLife: Global Insurance Assessment Regime Like ‘A Black Box’

    {November 16th, 2015} by Frank Klimko, Washington correspondent, BestWeek: frank.klimko@ambest.com

    WASHINGTON – The ongoing efforts to identify and impose enhanced supervision for globally active insurance companies is not transparent and threatens to tilt the competitive marketplace against U.S. companies, said Graham Cox, executive vice president for global risk management at MetLife Inc. “The global assessment model is a black box,” Cox said. “There is not […]

    Advisor Confidence Running High: Half of All Advisors Expect Firm Growth between Five and 10 Percent in Coming Year; 15 Percent Project Growth Rates over 20 Percent

    {November 16th, 2015} by Business Wire

    Tipping Point: Technology Trumps Client Demographics as Leading Driver of Change; Creating New Opportunities for Growth   November 12, 2015 01:00 PM Eastern Standard Time BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A majority of independent registered investment advisors (RIAs) are projecting firm growth in the year ahead, according to the results of the latest Independent Advisor Outlook Study (IAOS) from […]

    Insurers’ Ad Campaigns Aim To Connect

    {November 16th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    Lincoln Financial Group’s announcement that its new advertising campaign will contain social media cues could be a harbinger of things to come as financial services companies ramp up holiday season marketing efforts. Lincoln’s new “Then and Now” campaign juxtaposes images of people as they appeared in the past and as they are now, as if […]

    Report: U.S. life insurers’ bond portfolios more vulnerable

    {November 16th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch

    U.S. life insurers are more exposed to corporate credit risk than they were before the 2007–2009 financial crisis. And that makes them more vulnerable to a downgrading of their credit ratings if credit markets and the economy take a turn for the worse. The source of this analysis: Fitch Ratings. A special report of the […]

    How the life insurance industry will change in 2016

    {November 16th, 2015} by Rod Rishel

    As we reflect on 2015 and look toward 2016, sea change in America is resulting in a wave of effects on the life insurance industry. From shifts in demographics to Americans’ health status and their sources of retirement income, the new realities are reflected in ways that carriers and their products are transforming to offer solutions.  […]

    Berkshire Hathaway Lowers Investment in Goldman Sachs

    {November 16th, 2015} by Katherine Chiglinsky and Sonali Basak

    Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. reduced its investment in Goldman Sachs Group Inc. by 13 percent during the third quarter. The billionaire investor’s Omaha, Nebraska-based firm said it owned almost 11 million shares at the end of September, the company said Monday in a regulatory filing. That compared with 12.6 million shares in June. Berkshire […]

    Three Reasons Why You Lose a Sale to a Woman

    {November 15th, 2015} by Holly Buchanan

    How many of your clients are couples? And how many of those couples include a woman? If you’re like most financial professionals, that’s the majority of your clients. While men and women buy the same financial services and products, they often buy for different reasons. Her top criteria may not be his. Many couples include […]

    14 of the most recognizable retirement brands

    {November 13th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    You may think that social media is mostly used by the younger generations, by Gen X and millennials. The data says otherwise, however. Approximately seventy percent of boomers are on Facebook — and this is according to an article published last year by AdWeek, so the percentage may have increased slightly for 2015. Click HERE to read […]

    Manulife Reports Third-Quarter Drop in Net Income, Hurt by Oil and Gas Investments

    {November 13th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    TORONTO – Manulife Financial Corp. reported a steep decline in third-quarter net income available to shareholders, due to losses in its oil and gas investments, the company said in its earnings statement. Net income attributable to shareholders fell to C$622 million (US$468.9 million) from C$1.1 billion in the prior year. “The decline in net income […]

    MIB: October Individual Life Applications Extend Positive Activity in Sector

    {November 13th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    BRAINTREE, Mass. – Individual life insurance applications continued their upward trend in October, according to a monthly tracking report from underwriting and risk assessment consultancy MIB Group. Application activity moved 3.5% higher in October versus a year ago, extended a five-quarter positive streak, MIB said. The surge was led by applicants age 0 to 44 […]

    Aegon CEO: Sales Rise but Canadian Deal Leads to Third-Quarter Loss

    {November 13th, 2015} by David Pilla, international editor, BestWeek: David.Pilla@ambest.com

    THE HAGUE, Netherlands – Charges related to the sale of its Canadian business was the main factor in Aegon NV’s third-quarter net loss, along with a negative impact from actuarial assumption changes. “What we’re seeing in the third quarter is that on the one hand our earnings have been impacted by assumption changes, and on […]

    RGA Exec: Asian Life Insurers Face Technology, Investment Challenges

    {November 13th, 2015} by Ernesto Calucag, Hong Kong news editor: Ernesto.Calucag@ambest.com

    MANILA, Philippines – Innovation will be a significant game changer in the insurance industry that will define the line between market losers and winners, according to Gary Comerford, chief marketing officer at Reinsurance Group of America, Inc. Comerford said this new market dynamic will be more apparent in Asia given the changing demographics and evolving […]

    Manulife CEO Sees Plenty of Middle-Class Opportunity Despite China’s ‘Slowdown’

    {November 13th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    TORONTO – Manulife’s president and chief executive officer, Donald Guloien has a message for those in North America who keep asking what he’s doing about the slowdown in China. “It’s kind of ironic. We don’t get asked that question by those who know China well,” he said. “It’s not hard dealing with the impact of […]

    Horace Mann thanks educators during American Education Week

    {November 13th, 2015} by PRNewswire

    SPRINGFIELD, Ill., Nov. 13, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — “Making Dreams Possible” is something educators do every day for their students, and during American Education Week, Horace Mann, a company focused on helping school employees find financial success at every stage of their lives, encourages everyone to say thanks to an educator. “A special connection with a teacher, […]

    Women in Insurance & Financial Services Announces 2015 Award Winners

    {November 13th, 2015} by readMedia

    ALBANY, NY (11/12/2015)(readMedia)— Several women were honored by Women in Insurance & Financial Services at the Annual WIFS Awards Ceremony held on October 29 in Baltimore, Maryland. “WIFS awards recognize the personal accomplishments of these amazing members, while highlighting the collective voice that our organization gives women in the industry,” stated Immediate Past President, Susan […]

    DOL update: Winning the market with new regulations: BLOG

    {November 13th, 2015} by Mike McGlothlin

    The proposed rule from the Department of Labor takes up a lot of conversation these days. While we await the final rule, it’s clear that we are likely to be acting in a fiduciary role soon. Many have predicted lower sales and as much as 25 percent of the sales force shrinking. However, with any […]

    Genworth Financial to drop from S&P 500 index

    {November 13th, 2015} by IFAWebNews Staff

    Because shares of Richmond, Va.-based insurance company Genworth Financial have seen considerable pressure lately, the carrier will drop out of the S&P 500 index, according to Bloomberg. Genworth’s shares are down 44% this year following a 45% drop in 2014. When it drops out of the S&P 500 at the closing bell on Nov. 17, it […]

    A.M. Best Places Ratings of Fidelity & Guaranty Life Holdings, Inc. and Its Key Subsidiaries Under Review

    {November 13th, 2015} by Best's News Service

    Oldwick – A.M. Best has placed under review with developing implications the financial strength rating (FSR) of B++ (Good) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “bbb+” of the key life/health subsidiaries of Fidelity & Guaranty Life Holdings, Inc. (FGL) (Delaware). Concurrently, A.M. Best has placed under review with developing implications the ICR and existing […]

    John Hancock Real Estate Unit Buys Newport Beach Office Complex for $104.5 Million

    {November 13th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    BOSTON – John Hancock’s real estate division has acquired a two-building office complex in Newport Beach, California, for $104.5 million, the company said. The 5000 Birch development has twin multi-floor towers that are sheathed in dark blue glass and is already built, according to a Manulife spokeswoman. Together the buildings comprise 306,000 square feet of […]

    Zurich seeks to replace CEO Senn: Report

    {November 13th, 2015} by IFAWebNews Staff

    Zurich Insurance Group is actively seeking a replacement for Chief Executive Officer Martin Senn, following third-quarter losses that forced the international insurer to abandon its bid for Britain’s RSA Insurance Group, according to a Swiss business magazine. According to Swiss business magazine Bilanz, Switzerland’s biggest insurer has hired a London executive search firm. Bilanz reported […]

    Life insurance industry’s investable assets hit $3.4 trillion

    {November 11th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch

    Investable assets for the U.S. life insurance industry increased 4.0 percent in 2014, according to new research. Conning discloses this finding in “Life Insurance Industry Investments: The Search for Yield Runs Dry.” The study examines strategic issues facing life insurers. Click HERE to read 

    JPMorgan victim of largest customer hack

    {November 11th, 2015} by PATRICIA HURTADO, GREG FARRELL

    (Bloomberg)–[updated] JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Dow Jones & Co. were among the targets of the biggest theft of customer data from U.S. financial institutions in history, prosecutors said in announcing charges against four men accused of running online schemes including stock manipulation and casino gambling that generated hundreds of millions of dollars. The new allegations against the […]

    National Western Life Group, Inc. Announces 2015 Third Quarter Earnings

    {November 11th, 2015} by PRNewswire

    AUSTIN, Texas, Nov. 5, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Ross R. Moody, President and Interim Chief Executive Officer of National Western Life Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: NWLI), announced today third quarter 2015 consolidated net earnings of $16.2 million, or $4.59 per diluted Class A common share, compared with consolidated net earnings of $28.5 million, or $8.05 per diluted Class […]

    MassMutual Named 2016 Military Friendly® Employer

    {November 11th, 2015} by PRNewswire

    SPRINGFIELD, Mass., Nov. 11, 2015 /PRNewswire/ –– Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual) announced today that it has earned the 2016 Military Friendly® Employer designation by Victory Media, publisher of G.I. Jobs® and Military Spouse. MassMutual is recognized as having a solid commitment to recruiting individuals with military experience and a successful employee resource group (ERG)—Armed […]

    Voya Snags $500M+ Advisor Group from Investor’s Capital

    {November 11th, 2015} by N/A

    Group is led by Boston’s Brian Woods Voya Financial Advisors has recruited a $500 million-plus advisor group from Investor’s Capital Corporation. An initial group of 17 advisors with $415 million in assets under management moved to Voya on November 2nd with a second wave from various broker-dealers following in the first quarter of next year. […]

    An Interview With a Veteran

    {November 10th, 2015} by Wink RockStars

    Wink is closed on November 11th to honor Veterans Day. We are proud of the U.S. Veterans and want to say THANK YOU to those who serve and have served! We would like to take a moment to feature a very special veteran in our extended Wink family, Sheryl Moore’s father, Kurt S. Sundberg, CTRCM, […]

    Anbang Insurance Group to acquire Fidelity & Guaranty Life

    {November 10th, 2015} by PRNewswire

    BEIJING and DES MOINES, Iowa, Nov. 9, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Anbang Insurance Group Co., Ltd. (“Anbang” or “the Company”), a leading global comprehensive insurance group based in Beijing, China, and Fidelity & Guaranty Life (NYSE: FGL) (“FGL”), a leading provider of annuities and life insurance in the U.S., jointly announced that they have entered into a […]

    China’s Anbang Group Acquires US-Based Top-10 Annuity Writer Fidelity & Guaranty

    {November 10th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    DES MOINES, Iowa – Beijing-based Anbang Insurance Group has entered into a merger agreement to acquire Fidelity & Guaranty Life. Total value of the transaction was not disclosed. Terms call for Anbang to pay $26.80 per share, a 28.9% premium, the companies said in a joint statement. The deal is scheduled to close in the […]

    Fidelity & Guaranty Life to be sold to Chinese insurance company

    {November 10th, 2015} by Business Record Staff

    Beijing-based Anbang Insurance Group Co. Ltd. has reached a definitive merger agreement to buy Fidelity & Guaranty Life for $26.80 per share, according to a release. Reuters valued the deal at nearly $1.6 billion.   Fidelity & Guaranty Life moved its headquarters to downtown Des Moines from Baltimore, Md., in 2013. New York-based HRG Group Inc., the insurer’s […]

    Insurance industry added more jobs in September

    {November 10th, 2015} by SHAWN SELBY, PROPERTYCASUALTY360.COM

    Insurance industry employment year over year was up for every sector— save one — in September, according to data published Friday by the U.S. Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and compiled by the New York City-based Insurance Information Institute. For the 12 months ending in September, Property and Casualty (P&C) carrier employment rose […]

    The 6 biggest myths about dividend-paying whole life insurance

    {November 10th, 2015} by Pamela Yellen

    First off, full disclosure: I’m a financial investigator and an educator, not a licensed financial advisor. I’ve spent the last 25 years investigating more than 450 different financial products and strategies.  Of all of those products, my very favorite is dividend-paying whole life insurance. Click HERE to read article

    American Equity Reports Third Quarter 2015 Results

    {November 10th, 2015} by Business Wire

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Nov. 4, 2015– American Equity Investment Life Holding Company (NYSE:AEL), a leading issuer of fixed index annuities, today reported third quarter 2015 net income of $97.3 million, or $1.19 per diluted common share, compared to a third quarter 2014 net income of $67.8 million, or $0.85 per diluted common share. Non-GAAP […]

    Symetra Shareholders Green-Light Acquisition by Japan’s Sumitomo Corp.

    {November 10th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    BELLEVUE, Wash. – Symetra Financial shareholders have given their approval to its proposed $3.76 billion acquisition by Sumitomo Corp. At a special meeting, more than 99.7% of the votes were in favor, according to a statement by Symetra. The voting represented more than 85% of all outstanding shares, it said. Sumitomo previously announced it plans […]

    The Phoenix Companies Reports Third Quarter 2015 Results

    {November 10th, 2015} by Business Wire

    HARTFORD, Conn.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Phoenix Companies, Inc. (NYSE:PNX) (“Phoenix”) today announced financial results for the third quarter of 2015 and filed its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2015 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). CEO Comments “The previously announced transaction with Nassau is progressing and remains on track to […]

    FBL Financial Profits Shrivel 12% In 3Q

    {November 10th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    An increase in death benefits led to a 12 percent third quarter net income loss at FBL Financial Group Inc., the West Des Moines, Iowa-based owner of Farm Bureau Life Insurance. Company officials cited the increase in death benefits as the primary reason third-quarter net income dropped to $26.7 million compared with the year-ago period. […]

    Life Insurance After Divorce

    {November 10th, 2015} by The Grand Laker (Vinita, OK)

    Most people buy life insurance to help family members stay financially secure after the policyholder’s death. Yet, when a marriage ends, the topic of life insurance is too often overlooked. These five tips can help you and your soon-to-be-ex discuss important changes to your policies before you sign the papers: Click HERE    Wink’s Note: […]

    AIG Reports 3Q Loss As Company Restructures

    {November 10th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    AIG reported a third quarter net loss, but the company president said that AIG is moving toward streamlining its operations and positioning itself for long-term competitiveness. The company blamed the third quarter loss on lower investment income, earnings derived from the value of holdings abroad and a hefty restructuring charge of $274 million. In August […]

    Insure.com survey lists insurance carriers with best customer service

    {November 10th, 2015} by IFAwebnews Staff

    Based on a survey of more than 4,000 U.S. insurance customers, Insure.com released its 2016 rankings of customer service satisfaction among the largest auto insurance, life insurance, health insurance and home insurance companies. Customers of the California State Automobile Association, Voya Financial, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey and The Hartford are more […]

    Conning–Life Insurance Industry Continues Investment Struggle against Unrelentingly Low Interest Rates

    {November 10th, 2015} by Conning, Inc.

    HARTFORD, Conn., Nov. 9, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — The life insurance industry’s investment decisions continued to focus on yield in 2014 and into 2015, according to a new study by Conning. “The quest for yield has been the key focus for the life industry investment portfolio for years now,” said Mary Pat Campbell, Vice President, Insurance Research […]

    Access to Private Vault Worth $1 Billion Is Finally Available to Advisors

    {November 10th, 2015} by NAFA Staff

    A private online vault filled with tools responsible for over $1 Billion in new money, is finally being opened to more than just a few advisors. ECA Marketing announced that it has reached an exclusive agreement with Mike Kaselnak to offer his 5Q system to ECA’s agents. The 5Q system has been used by a […]

    NAIC IUL Illustration Subgroup Proposes Revisions to Actuarial Guideline 49

    {November 9th, 2015} by Frederick Bellamy

    On November 3, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) IUL Illustration (A) Subgroup circulated for comment proposed revisions (Proposed Revisions) to recently adopted Actuarial Guideline 49 governing illustrations for indexed universal life (IUL) insurance policies. The Proposed Revisions are meant to address situations where an IUL policy makes available multiple index account options with […]

    New C.A.R.E. Study from Northwestern Mutual Reveals the Caregiving Conundrum

    {November 9th, 2015} by Northwestern Mutual

    MILWAUKEE, Nov. 9, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — New research from Northwestern Mutual released today uncovers a number of surprising insights into the emotional and financial implications of delivering care to an elderly relative or friend. Drawn from the perspectives of both current and future caregivers, the C.A.R.E  (Costs, Accountabilities, Realities, Expectations) Study finds that Americans are often […]

    Put Clients First When Advising About Annuities

    {November 9th, 2015} by ThinkAdvisor

    At Jefferson National, we’ve been following for years the polarizing debate around whether variable annuities are a key part of retirement planning or the worst of all possible investment vehicles. To say the least, the question has been treated as a black and white issue. Recently, the question gained further steam when ThinkAdvisor published a […]

    MetLife Posts 42% Drop in 3Q Net Income

    {November 9th, 2015} by Caroline Saucer, editor, BestWeek: Caroline.Saucer@ambest.com

    NEW YORK – MetLife Inc. has posted a 42% drop in third-quarter net income to $1.2 billion. Premiums, fees and other revenues rose 3% to $13.1 billion, it said in a statement. “Macroeconomic factors, including foreign currency, equity markets and interest rates, as well as a previously announced non-cash tax-related charge, negatively impacted MetLife’s third-quarter […]

    MetLife CEO names cost-cutter Steigerwalt as interim U.S. head

    {November 9th, 2015} by KATHERINE CHIGLINSKY, DONI BLOOMFIELD

    (Bloomberg) — MetLife Inc.promoted Eric Steigerwalt to interim head of the U.S. business, the insurer’s largest division, after the executive worked on reducing costs by consolidating offices and cutting jobs. Steigerwalt, who had led U.S. retail, adds responsibility for other units in the nation, including group-voluntary coverage, workplace benefits, corporate benefit funding and direct sales, Chief […]

    How MetLife Technologists Help Kids Go Tech

    {November 9th, 2015} by Sharon Goldman

    It’s been just two years since MetLife opened its global technology and operations offices in Cary, North Carolina, a Raleigh suburb that is part of the famed research Triangle area and now boasts a $125 million campus. But the company’s employees, from infrastructure engineers and software scientists to programmers, project managers and administrators, have already […]

    Why Ken Fisher is wrong on annuities: Milevsky, Finke

    {November 7th, 2015} by JANE WOLLMAN RUSOFF

    Ken Fisher hates annuities, and annuity experts aren’t exactly in love with what the famed money manager said about those retirement products in an interview last week. The chairman and CEO of Fisher Investments, who runs a three-year-old annuity conversion program, likened annuity sales approaches to the too-good-to-be-true promises of Ponzi schemes and charged that annuity salespeople often […]

    529 plans vs. life insurance: 7 questions to ask clients

    {November 6th, 2015} by Tom Nawrocki

    September was National College Savings Month, although it is probably better characterized as National College Spending Month, as anyone who has written out that first tuition check of the school year can attest. And many Americans wrote out that tuition check with money taken from a 529 savings plan. According to the College Savings Plan […]

    Life Carriers Imposing Huge Rate Hikes On Some Policyholders

    {November 6th, 2015} by Ron Sussman

    The life insurance industry’s success is built largely on trust. Consumers enter into decades-long contracts with the belief that the insurer will honor the original terms of their policies. But an unprecedented type of premium increase is starting to wreak havoc on consumers, and it could jeopardize the life industry itself. Click HERE to view […]

    Variable Products Suffered During 3Q

    {November 6th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    With the reporting period for third quarter life insurers’ earnings now over, we sum up items of note for a quarter whose big story was the growl of the bear market in late August and early September. Investors heard it too. Who doesn’t when the Standard & Poor’s 500 index lost 6.3 percent in August? […]

    Prudential’s US Retirement Solutions Fall on Annuities

    {November 6th, 2015} by Robert Karr

        US Retirement Solutions Prudential Financial’s (PRU) US Retirement Solutions and Investment Management division reported adjusted operating income of $732 million for 3Q15, compared to $823 million in 3Q14. The division forms 50% of the company’s total adjusted operating income.   Individual Annuities segment The Individual Annuities segment posted a fall in operating income of […]

    Prudential CEO: We’re Clearly Impacted by Low Interest Rates, Market Volatility

    {November 6th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    NEWARK, N.J. – Weakening foreign currencies and headwinds from persistent low interest rates suppressed Prudential’s third-quarter revenue, the company’s chairman said, but its net income jumped $1 billion over last year. “Like others, we’re clearly impacted by headwinds such as persistent low interest rates and the potential for ongoing market volatility, and over the short […]

    Prudential Third-Quarter Net Income Up $1 Billion From Year Ago

    {November 6th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    NEWARK, N.J. – Prudential Financial said its third-quarter net income attributable to the company jumped to $1.46 billion, up from $465 million a year ago. Total revenue fell to $11.07 billion from $11.76 billion. Premium revenue fell to $5.27 billion from $5.92 billion. Policy charges and fee income increased to $1.55 billion from $1.51 billion. […]

    Voya CEO: Company on Track to Meet 2018 Goals Despite 90% Drop in 3Q Net

    {November 6th, 2015} by Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

    NEW YORK – Despite a “very unusual” loss in individual life for the third quarter, Voya executives said during a conference call the company has new growth opportunities and is staying on course to meet a series of financial goals in 2018. Those targets include a return on equity of between 13.5% and 14.5%, said […]

    Women-owned businesses less profitable in U.S.

    {November 5th, 2015} by Jack Craver

    Labor laws that prevent women from moving up in the workplace may actually encourage them to start more businesses. But the businesses they start are not as profitable as the businesses run by women in countries with more generous benefits geared towards helping families deal with childcare. That’s according to newly-released research by Sarah Thébaud, a […]

    Nationwide’s Core Performance Drives $1 Billion in Net Operating Income

    {November 5th, 2015} by Nationwide

    COLUMBUS, Ohio–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Nationwide—one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the U.S.—today reported total operating revenue of $19.5 billion for the first three quarters of 20151, up 3 percent over the same period in 2014. Total sales of $31 billion across all product lines through the third quarter were up […]

    Voya Financial, Prudential, MetLife Miss 3Q Estimates

    {November 5th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

    Voya Financial Inc., the New York-based annuity, retirement, insurance and employee benefits giant, reported third-quarter net income of $40.3 million, a 90 percent drop from the $406 million profit the company reported in the year-ago period. Net income per share diluted was 18 cents compared to $1.59 per share diluted in the year-ago period, the […]

    Obama’s MyRA Retirement Savings Plan Goes Nationwide

    {November 5th, 2015} by Suzanne Woolley

    (Bloomberg) MyRA, the Obama administration’s free, guaranteed-return starter retirement account, launched nationwide today. The government-backed plan is an option for the tens of millions of U.S. workers whose employers don’t offer a retirement savings plan. MyRA accounts are open to anyone earning an annual salary of less than $131,000, or $193,00 if they are married […]

    Q&A: Ex-NBA player Antoine Walker on financial planning, Paul Pierce

    {November 5th, 2015} by Ananth Pandian | NBA writer

    Antoine Walker carved out a niche for himself in the NBA as a mobile power forward with a solid jumper. While he was a three-time NBA-Star and won an NBA championship with theMiami Heat in 2006, Walker is not often remembered for his achievements on the court. Instead after declaring bankruptcy in 2010, Walker has […]

    INDUSTRY Advisors Jolted by Details of Proposed DoL Payout Disclosure Plan

    {November 5th, 2015} by Charles Paikert

    WASHINGTON — Talk about complete disclosure. It takes a lot to surprise most advisors, but details of the Department of Labor’s proposed fiduciary rule announced at the Financial Services Institute’s annual Advisor Summit had them gaping. Under the suggested guidelines, advisors would have to provide complete payout information to clients for each advisor and each […]

    John Hancock to Acquire Assets of Transamerica Broker Dealer Unit

    {November 4th, 2015} by John Hancock

    BOSTON, Nov. 3, 2015 /PRNewswire/ –– John Hancock Financial Network, Inc.(JHFN), a distribution channel of John Hancock, today announced that it has agreed to acquire certain assets of St. Petersburg, FL-based Transamerica Financial Advisors, Inc. (TFA), a Transamerica company. Upon closing of the transaction, up to 1,100 advisors from TFA working in roughly 50 firms across […]

    Goldman Sachs faces investigation over auction of securities

    {November 4th, 2015} by Michael J. Moore

    (Bloomberg) — Goldman Sachs Group Inc. added the offering and auction of securities, as well as “when-issued trading,” to a list of activities that regulators and other government bodies are investigating. The bank made the disclosure Tuesday in a quarterly regulatory filing, without specifying which agencies or regulators are probing the items on the list. […]

    OneAmerica Rolls Out Low-Cost Income Rider

    {November 4th, 2015} by OneAmerica

    Freedom Builder Plus geared for retirement-minded individuals INDIANAPOLIS, IN – (Nov. 3, 2015) OneAmerica® has launched Freedom Builder Plus, a unique and guaranteed new retirement income strategy. Freedom Builder Plus, or FBP, is an indexed guaranteed income rider available with the fixed indexed annuity, Freedom Builder. Freedom Builder Plus, available to individuals in 47 states, […]

    The 5 Hottest Carriers in Insurance Technology

    {November 4th, 2015} by N/A

    2015 has been a big year for certain insurance technology ideas moving from the realm of theory to reality. Let’s take a look at the courageous carriers that have powered an innovation agenda. 1. Erie Insurance In April, Erie was granted conditional approval to test business applications of drones. The company talked the talkand walked […]

    AIG Planning $100 Million in Tech Spending

    {November 4th, 2015} by Nathan Golia

    AIG announced restructuring plans that include a significant investment in technology. Though most of the company’s $500 million in planned restructuring costs will go to employee severance, about $100 million will go to “costs associated with modernization of information technology platforms.” “We’ll continue to make select investments in technology and innovation to build sustainable competitive […]

    Why You’re Never Too Young For Life Insurance

    {November 4th, 2015} by USAAVoice Team, USAA

    You’re young, single and childless. Why in the world would you need life insurance? Kenny Sutton, director of Life Insurance Product Management at USAA, says he gets that question all the time, but for him, the answer is a no-brainer. Getting life insurance as soon as possible can help save money and increase flexibility in […]

    Consumers vote: Best and worst life insurance carriers

    {November 4th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    If a person unrelated to your business asked your clients to rate your practice, how do you think they would respond? A recent survey from Insure.com asked current customers of the largest life insurance carriers which companies they like best.  The website, which provides information on different types of insurance to the general public, commissioned Op4G […]

    Registration open for Iowa Student Loan scholarship contest

    {November 4th, 2015} by N/A

    Registration is open for a scholarship that offers Iowa high school seniors a chance to receive $2,000 for college while learning important financial literacy skills. In addition, each recipient’s high school will receive a corresponding $500 award. High school seniors may register for the Iowa Financial Know-How Challenge: Senior Scholarship between now and March 4. Iowa Student […]

    FBL Financial reports third-quarter earnings

    {November 4th, 2015} by N/A

    FBL Financial Group Inc. today reported net income for the third quarter of 2015 of $26.7 million, or $1.06 per share, down from $30.2 million, or $1.21 per share, for the third quarter of 2014. Operating income totaled $27.3 million, or $1.09 per share, for the third quarter of 2015, compared with $29.5 million, or […]

    SEC Eyes Variable Annuity Buyout Disclosures

    {November 4th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    Variable annuity carriers need to focus carefully on disclosures they make in their buyout offers to policyholders, said a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) official in a speech this week in Washington. The disclosure staff also is monitoring disclosure of variable annuity fee tables, said Dave Grim, director of the SEC’s Division of Investment Management. […]

    Ameritas Life To Acquire Security Life

    {November 4th, 2015} by Business Wire

    LINCOLN, Neb.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Ameritas Life Insurance Corp. (Ameritas Life), based in Lincoln, Nebraska, and Security Life Insurance Company of America (Security Life), based in Minnetonka, Minnesota, jointly announced today that Ameritas Life will acquire Security Life and Security Health Insurance Company of America, New York, Inc. (Security Health), effective end of day December 31, 2015, […]

    Genworth to sell European mortgage unit to AmTrust for $55 million

    {November 4th, 2015} by IFAwebnews Staff

    Richmond, Va.-based Genworth Financial Inc. announced that its mortgage insurance subsidiary has agreed to sell its European business to AmTrust Financial Services Inc for $55 million. Genworth Mortgage Insurance Corp. will use proceeds of the sale to provide additional capital credit to GMICO under the private mortgage insurer eligibility requirements. Genworth expects to record an […]

    FIAs Give Traditional VAs A Jolt

    {November 4th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    Fixed index annuities (FIAs) pose a threat to traditional variable annuities, thanks in large part to the living benefit features in FIAs. This is according to a new report from Cerulli Associates. From 2007 to 2014, the compound annual growth rate for FIAs was 9.7 percent, Cerulli researchers pointed out. Click HERE to view article […]

    Paul Mistretta Named SVP and Chief OO, Individual Life at Symetra

    {November 4th, 2015} by N/A

    Company expands Waltham, Massachusetts-based Individual Life offices to support division growth BELLEVUE, Wash. — (Nov. 3, 2015) — Symetra Life Insurance Company today announced the appointment of Paul Mistretta as senior vice president and chief operations officer of its Individual Life Division. He reports to Tom Marra, president and CEO of Symetra Financial Corporation, and will […]

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