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Archive for October 2017

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  • Treasury encourages DOL to consider fiduciary-rule harm

    {October 31st, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    A new Treasury Department report outlines potential harm being caused by the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule and tells the agency to keep those consequences in mind while it reviews the regulation. Administration skepticism about the DOL rule has been evident since President Donald J. Trump in a Feb. 3 memo directed DOL to reassess the measure. Now, […]

    FSI Offers Disclosure Alternative to BICE

    {October 31st, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    A uniform fiduciary rule issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission should include a “two-tier client disclosure regime” as an alternative to the best-interest contract exemption set out in the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule, the Financial Services Institute told the securities regulator Monday. David Bellaire, FSI’s general counsel, told the SEC in FSI’s comment letter that a […]

    Advisers: Morningstar’s star ratings not much use, but clients love them

    {October 31st, 2017} by John Waggoner

    Investment advisers reacted to the Wall Street Journal’s attack on Morningstar’s star ratings with a single question: Why would you use measures of past performance to choose a mutual fund? Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required. 

    Roles and Opportunities of Women in the Insurance Industry Examined in Women in Insurance: Leading to Action White Paper

    {October 31st, 2017} by STEMconnector

    WASHINGTON, Oct. 24, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — STEMconnector announced the release of its Women in Insurance White Paper at the Million Women Mentors National Summit and Awards Ceremony on October 24 at the National Press Club. The paper provides an overview of existing trends in the industry while highlighting innovative approaches currently underway at a number of leading insurance organizations and […]

    Ameriprise Tells Analysts It Likes Advisors

    {October 31st, 2017} by Allison Bell

    Executives from Ameriprise Financial Inc. today bragged about attracting advisors, rather than about efforts to reduce use of advisors, today during a conference call with Wall Street securities analysts. James Cracchiolo, the Minneapolis-based company’s chairman, said the company has been trying to support advisors by offering advisors new digital tools, and by using an “Our […]

    3 FIA Myths to Unlock For Customers

    {October 31st, 2017} by Jim Poolman

    As the burden of retirement continues to shift from the employer to the employee, the 10,000 U.S. baby boomers retiring each day are actively seeking products that they can use for financial stability and, specifically, products that give them a combination of principal protection, lifetime income, and a solid rate of return. New survey results […]

    A.M. Best Upgrades Credit Ratings of Atlantic Coast Life Ins. Co.; Affirms Credit Ratings of Sentinel Security Life Ins. Co.

    {October 31st, 2017} by Best's News Service

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE OLDWICK – OCTOBER 03, 2017 A.M. Best has upgraded the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) to B++ (Good) from B+ (Good) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating (Long-Term ICR) to “bbb” from “bbb-“ of Atlantic Coast Life Insurance Company (ACLI) (Charleston, SC). Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the FSR of B++ (Good) and […]

    Treasury Calls for the Creation of an Annuity Oversight Bureau

    {October 31st, 2017} by Lee Barney

    The Treasury Department believes that if an expert bureau were created to assess the viability of annuity providers, retirement plan sponsors would be more inclined to offer in-plan guaranteed lifetime income options.   In a new report, “A Financial System That Creates Economic Opportunities,” the U.S. Treasury Department discusses the advantages of lifetime income products, […]

    How the fiduciary debate between SEC and DoL is shaking out

    {October 31st, 2017} by Andrew Welsch

    WASHINGTON – Is the SEC offering an olive branch to the Department of Labor regarding its handling of the controversial fiduciary rule? In comments at the fall SIFMA conference, SEC Chairman Jay Clayton emphasized the need to respect the Department of Labor’s authority. At least one industry watcher saw the gesture as a peace offering […]

    Knighthead Annuity Welcomes Brian ONeill as Chief Actuary

    {October 31st, 2017} by Knighthead Annuity

    GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands, Oct. 26, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Knighthead Annuity and Life Assurance Company (“Knighthead Annuity”) is pleased to announce and welcome Brian O’Neill as Chief Actuary.   As a member of Knighthead Annuity’s executive team, Mr. O’Neill will be responsible for enterprise-wide corporate oversight of the company’s actuarial practices. Brian had over 13 […]

    More VA Owners Are Tapping Their GLWBs For Retirement Income

    {October 31st, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    More people who own variable annuities with a guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefit (GLWB) rider are choosing to use that benefit for its intended purpose – providing an income stream in retirement – a new study has found. Nearly a quarter of those who own VAs with the GLWB rider elected to withdraw income at the […]

    Hot Hybrid VAs Draw Complaints From Some

    {October 31st, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Sales of a new type of variable annuity are running hot, but the product line isn’t without complaints. Hybrid variable annuities, also known as structured or buffer variable annuities, protect, or buffer, contract holders from market downturns to a limited extent. In exchange, higher caps are added to interest credited to the policyholder. Click HERE […]

    US Treasury Rejects Bank-Like Rules for Insurers, Questions SIFI Label

    {October 31st, 2017} by Frank Klimko

    WASHINGTON – The U.S. Treasury rejected using federal regulations to impose bank-like supervision on insurance companies and questioned whether designating large individual carriers as systemically important financial institutions was an appropriate way of protecting the nation’s economy. “We are recommending more efficient and effective regulation to give consumers access to the products they need while […]

    Insurance Selling Magazine targets a Jan/Feb 2018 premiere issue

    {October 31st, 2017} by Wink's RockStars

    Insurance Forums is launching a print publication in early 2018, to complement their online content. For the past 10 years, Insurance Forums has remained the largest online media outlet for the insurance producers, RIAs, and financial advisors. As Insurance Forums’ membership grows beyond 80,000 producers, the void left by the print media is becoming more evident. Many Insurance Forums’ […]

    For Second Consecutive Year, NCOIL Staff Participates in “No-Shave November”

    {October 31st, 2017} by Paul Penna

    Manasquan, NJ –  NCOIL CEO Tom Considine announced today that for the second consecutive year, the organization’s staff will participate in No-Shave November 2017.   “Last year the NCOIL staff participated in No-Shave November 2016 and it was successful, albeit a little itchy. As I previously shared, as a cancer survivor myself, the fight against […]

    Voya Financial Announces Third-Quarter 2017 Results

    {October 31st, 2017} by Voya

    TUESDAY, OCTOBER 31, 2017 NEW YORK, Oct. 31, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA) today announced financial results for the third quarter of 2017. 3Q 2017 net income available to common shareholders of $0.81 per diluted share1, which reflects: A gain of $0.51 per diluted share, after-tax2, in the Closed Block Variable Annuity (CBVA) segment due to changes in the […]

    MetLife Says AIG De-Designation Confirms Argument for Regulatory Relief

    {October 31st, 2017} by Frank Klimko

    WASHINGTON – Attorneys for MetLife Inc., said the recent de-designation of American International Group Inc. as a systemically important financial institution validates the company’s arguments MetLife should never have been named a SIFI. MetLife shed the SIFI designation last year via litigation and the FSOC de-designated AIG, last month. Only Prudential Financial Inc. is so […]

    Annuitization Push May Favor Insurers Over Agents

    {October 31st, 2017} by Allison Bell

    The employers that sponsor retirement plans often have different goals than the participants do, but policymakers in Washington may be converging on the idea that workers should get their financial advice through their employer plans, rather than through independent advisors they have located and hired themselves. Click HERE to read the original story via ThinkAdvisor. […]

    John McLaughlin’s Estate Gets an Annuity Decision

    {October 31st, 2017} by Steven A. Meyerowitz, Esq

    This story is reprinted by ThinkAdvisor with permission from FC&S Legal, the industry’s only comprehensive digital resource designed for insurance coverage law professionals. Visit the website to subscribe. Question! On a scale from one to 10, how certain is it that John Joseph McLaughlin, longtime moderator of The McLaughlin Group, upon his divorce from his former wife Christina Vidal, intended […]

    Ameriprise Financial Reports Third Quarter 2017 Results

    {October 30th, 2017} by Ameriprise

    MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Ameriprise Financial, Inc. (NYSE: AMP) today reported third quarter 2017 net income of $503 million, up $288 million compared to a year ago, or $3.24 per diluted share, up $1.94. Operating earnings were $548 million, up $321 million compared to a year ago, with operating earnings per diluted share of $3.53, up $2.16. Excluding […]

    Jon Stenberg Named EVP, Individual Life, at Symetra

    {October 30th, 2017} by Symetra

    October 30, 2017 — BELLEVUE, Wash.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Symetra Life Insurance Company today announced the appointment of Jon Stenberg as executive vice president of its Individual Life Division. In his new role, Stenberg will have responsibility for Symetra’s fastest-growing division, which recently launched its first indexed universal life insurance product. Stenberg will be based in the company’s Individual Life headquarters […]

    IPIPELINE ACQUIRES LASER APP SOFTWARE

    {October 30th, 2017} by iPipeline

    Exton, PA (September 19, 2017) – iPipeline® – a leading provider of cloud-based software solutions for the life insurance industry – today announced the acquisition of Laser App Software®, a premier provider of forms automation and management software for the securities and insurance industries. Laser App is used by approximately 100,000 registered investment advisors (RIAs), […]

    Watchdog group sues DOL to see records for fiduciary rule rewrite

    {October 30th, 2017} by Hazel Bradford

    The independent watchdog group American Oversight filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court for Washington to force the Department of the Labor to release records about revisions to the fiduciary rule now being considered. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required.

    Northwestern Mutual Launches $5M VC Fund to Support Local Startups

    {October 30th, 2017} by Jeff Buchanan

    Northwestern Mutual has in recent years begun supporting and working with more early-stage businesses, most notably through its 2015 acquisition of fintech startup LearnVest and creation of a $50 million venture capital fund. Now, the Milwaukee-based life insurance and financial services giant plans to inject $5 million into local startups over the next five years through its new Cream City […]

    Voices: It’s time for Morningstar to scrap its fund ratings

    {October 30th, 2017} by Nir Kaissar, Bloomberg Gadfly

    Morningstar’s ratings for mutual funds is being called into question after The Wall Street Journal took issue with its star-system. The system, which awards one to five stars, is based on the funds’ risk-adjusted performance relative to peers. The problem, according to the Journal, is that investors assume erroneously that “the number of stars awarded to a mutual fund […]

    How Advisors Really Use Morningstar Fund Ratings

    {October 30th, 2017} by Bernice Napach

    Financial advisors know they need to do a lot more due diligence when choosing mutual funds for clients than relying on Morningstar mutual fund ratings — if they use the ratings at all. The star ratings, based on past performance over the previous three, five and 10 years, are a look backward, with limited applicability to […]

    Saving LTCI and 9 Other Top Treasury Life and Annuity Projects

    {October 29th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    Officials at the U.S. Treasury Department have developed a long list of proposals for overhauling U.S. insurance regulation in a new report on regulation of the insurance and asset management sectors. The department prepared the report in response to an executive order, issued by President Donald Trump in February, that sets out the administration’s core […]

    With “Ascend,” Voya Enters the Structured Variable Annuity Race

    {October 26th, 2017} by Kerry Pechter

    Just as tablet computers occupy a niche mid-way between smartphones and laptops, indexed variable annuities (aka structured-note annuities) occupy a niche between fixed indexed annuities (FIA) and variable annuities (VA). Introduced in 2011, IVA sales have doubled yearly since 2014 and could reach $9 billion in 2017, according to LIMRA. Voya Financial will soon jump […]

    FINRA Regulatory Chief Axelrod to Depart

    {October 26th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority said Thursday that Susan Axelrod, head of regulatory operations, plans to depart the self-regulator to seek other opportunities in the private sector. At FINRA for 28 years, including at its predecessor NYSE Regulation, Axelrod will remain in her current post until Jan. 5, 2018, to help with a smooth transition […]

    Not a mirage’: Morningstar hits back at ratings criticism in WSJ

    {October 26th, 2017} by Alex Steger

    Chicago-based research shop defends its star and analyst rating systems in the wake of a critical article Morningstar has hit back at the Wall Street Journal over an article in the newspaper which criticized the Chicago research shop’s star ratings system. Under the headline The Morningstar Mirage, the Wall Journal Street published a detailed analysis of Morningstar’s star rating system […]

    The Morningstar Mirage

    {October 26th, 2017} by Kirsten Grind, Tom McGinty, Sarah Krouse

    Millions of people trust Morningstar Inc. to help them decide where to put their money. From pension funds to endowments to financial advisers to individuals, investors rely on Morningstar’s star ratings to help divide $16 trillion among America’s mutual funds, in much the way shoppers use Amazon’s ratings to pick products. A lot of these investors, and […]

    SEC Nominees Say Fiduciary Rule Isn’t Top Priority

    {October 25th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton signaled Tuesday that the agency’s rule would not supplant the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule, just as the two nominees to fill the open commissioner spots expressed support for the agency coordinating with Labor and the states in crafting a fiduciary rule. Click HERE to read the original story via ThinkAdvisor. […]

    DOL Rule Could Push Independent Advisors to Outsource Further

    {October 25th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    The Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule could push independent broker/dealer (IBD) advisors to rely more on outsourced IBD home-office portfolios, a new report has found. Many IBD-affiliated advisors already outsource their portfolio models to an IBD home office or a third-party service. But concern surrounding advisors’ liability in the face of heightened diligence has broker/dealer […]

    Why Many IMOs Have Earned a Bad Reputation: OPINION

    {October 25th, 2017} by Mark Triplett

    I recently attended a conference with about 40 other investment advisor representatives. As successful business entrepreneurs, they hold themselves to a high standard and are passionate about their profession. Oh, and did I mention that they toss around the acronym “IMO” like it’s a swear word? As an investment advisor representative myself, I relate to […]

    Index Accounts Added To The Security Benefit Total Value Annuity

    {October 24th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Four new index accounts have been added to Security Benefit Life’s Total Value Annuity, the company announced. This is a product in a market segment in which sales are expected to rise with the delay of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule. One- and two-year accounts based on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Low Volatility […]

    5 Winds Blowing Annuity Issuers Around Now

    {October 24th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    U.S. life insurance and annuity issuers are about to start releasing their earnings for the second quarter starting today. The quarter started July 1, when the threat of possible imminent enforcement of some U.S. Department of Labor fiduciary rule provisions hovered over the industry, and it ended Sept. 30, as the DOL fiduciary rule threat had blown over. Click […]

    Clayton says SEC can’t simply take over DOL fiduciary rule

    {October 24th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    Industry opponents of the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule want the Securities and Exchange Commission to swoop in and take over rulemaking on investment advice standards, but the agency can’t simply stop the DOL regulation, SEC Chairman Jay Clayton said Tuesday. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required.

    Athene employees distribute coats, boots to more than 1,500 students

    {October 24th, 2017} by Record Staff

    Nearly 100 employees of Athene USA, led by CEO Grant Kvalheim, are distributing new coats and hats this week to more than 1,500 Des Moines elementary students at four of the city’s neediest schools. It’s the 24th year that the West Des Moines-based annuity company has donated and distributed winter gear to Des Moines schools. […]

    Help Millennials Understand, and Use, the New Life Options

    {October 24th, 2017} by Jason Wellman

    Although millennials may not exactly fit what we think of as a traditional customer for life insurance coverage, they’re known for being financially savvy and having an interest in protecting their financial future — two attributes that lend themselves to receiving sound financial guidance. Whether they are risk adverse or simply see the value in […]

    A.M. Best Releases Updated Best’s Credit Rating Methodology and Related Criteria Procedures

    {October 24th, 2017} by A.M. Best

    CONTACTS:   Stephen A. Irwin Senior Director +1 908 439 2200, ext. 5454 stephen.irwin@ambest.com Carlos Wong-Fupuy Senior Director +44 20 7397 0287 carlos.wong-fupuy@ambest.com Christopher Sharkey Manager, Public Relations +1 908 439 2200, ext. 5159 christopher.sharkey@ambest.com Jim Peavy Director, Public Relations +1 908 439 2200, ext. 5644 james.peavy@ambest.com FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE OLDWICK – OCTOBER 13, 2017 […]

    Security Benefit Debuts Two New Indexes in Total Value AnnuityLeading Fixed Index Annuity Expands Investment Options

    {October 24th, 2017} by Globe Newswire

    TOPEKA, Kan., Oct. 23, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Security Benefit Life Insurance Company, a leader in the U.S. retirement savings market, announced today the addition of four new index accounts to the Total Value Annuity: one and two year accounts based on the S&P 500® Low Volatility Daily Risk Control 5% Index (S&P 500® Low Vol RC […]

    How Have the Annuity Issuers Really Been Doing?

    {October 24th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    Ameriprise Financial Inc. is about to start annuity issuers’ march into the third-quarter earnings season Tuesday, by releasing its latest results sometime around 4 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. Other “publicly traded insurers,” or companies with stock held by many public investors, will release their earnings over the next few weeks. Click HERE to read the original story via ThinkAdvisor. Just three […]

    Hancock Partners with Apple

    {October 24th, 2017} by John Hancock Financial

    BOSTON (October 23, 2017) – John Hancock announced today it is expanding its Apple Watch program to all new and existing John Hancock Vitality life insurance policyholders. The program gives customers the opportunity to earn the Apple Watch Series 3 for an initial fee of $25 through regular exercise. Now, in addition to permanent life […]

    Where to Turn When Bonds Aren’t the Investment They Used to Be

    {October 24th, 2017} by Andrew M. Costa

    Bonds have long been viewed as a great alternative for people who were in search of a good—and relatively conservative—investment. They provided a nice way to balance the portfolio, so that a steep drop in the stock market—like we experienced in 2008—wouldn’t do quite as much damage to your overall financial picture as it would […]

    State Fiduciary Laws Seen Adding to Chaos, Confusion

    {October 24th, 2017} by Rita Raagas De Ramos

    Proponents and critics of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule finally agree on something: States coming up with their own fiduciary laws just add to the chaos and confusion. Nevada passed and signed into law its Senate Bill 383, subjecting broker-dealers and investment advisors – effective July 1 – to the Nevada Revised Statute for financial planners, […]

    FINRA Ready to Provide ‘Technical’ Aid on Fiduciary Rule, Legal Chief Says

    {October 20th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority stands ready to provide “technical assistance” to the Labor Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission as the two agencies coordinate a fiduciary rulemaking, said Robert Colby, FINRA’s chief legal officer. Speaking on a panel at the National Society of Compliance Professionals national conference in Washington Monday, Colby said that FINRA “would love to […]

    An Annuity That Helps Advisors Buck The ‘Complications’

    {October 20th, 2017} by Ben Mattlin

    Guaranteed income for life, whether from an annuity or other insurance product rider, sounds good. But what are the pluses and minuses of the various options for securing this income guarantee? When is it smart for clients to annuitize their savings, and when is it better to secure a costly insurance rider? The answers depend […]

    Symetra Launches New Indexed Universal Life Product, Symetra Accumulator IUL

    {October 19th, 2017} by Symetra

    BELLEVUE, Wash.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Symetra Life Insurance Company, a growing provider in the individual life insurance space, has expanded its universal life portfolio with the introduction of Symetra Accumulator IUL. A flexible premium adjustable life insurance policy with index-linked interest options, Accumulator IUL is designed for permanent life insurance coverage, maximized policy value growth and supplemental income potential. […]

    Thrivent, DOL Anti-Arb Fiduciary Tussle Continues

    {October 19th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    The ongoing legal battle between Thrivent Financial for Lutherans and the Department of Labor over Labor’s fiduciary rule continues.   Thrivent has been fighting to halt the fiduciary rule’s anti-arbitration clause set out in the rule’s best-interest contract exemption, and filed a motion for preliminary injunction against the rule.   Click HERE to read the original […]

    Annuities Are Misunderstood, TIAA Says

    {October 19th, 2017} by Karen Demasters

    Americans crave a guaranteed income for retirement, but only a small minority have purchased an annuity, according to the 2017 “TIAA Lifetime Income Survey” released Tuesday. Only 13 percent of the 671 non-retired people surveyed by the financial services firm TIAA said they have purchased an annuity, the only retirement product that guarantees an income […]

    Life Insurance Customer Satisfaction Reaches All-Time High

    {October 19th, 2017} by J.D. Power

    COSTA MESA, Calif.: 17 Oct. 2017 — Improved economic conditions, favorable pricing and better customer engagement have driven customer satisfaction with U.S. life insurance plans to a record high, according to the J.D. Power 2017 U.S. Life Insurance StudySM released today. “U.S. life insurers have been doing a great job of converting increased demand into more […]

    10 ways to attract Millennials to insurance

    {October 19th, 2017} by Chris Davies

    Insurance is facing a millennial recruitment crisis. According to a recent study from Hartford, only a mere 4% of millennials are interested in pursuing a career within the sector. Whether you’re an industry veteran or a fresh-faced insurance millennial yourself, one thing is clear: something has to be done. Luckily, we’ve put together 10 ideas that […]

    John Hancock Partners with USA TODAY SPORTS Active Alliance to Become Official Life Insurance Partner of the Baltimore Marathon and Launches “Boston Bound” Sweepstakes

    {October 19th, 2017} by John Hancock

    BOSTON, Oct. 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — John Hancock is partnering with USA TODAY SPORTS Active Alliance to become the Official Life Insurance Partner of the Baltimore Marathon, and launching the “Boston Bound” Sweepstakes. Through this partnership, John Hancock, the only U.S. insurer to offer life insurance with Vitality that rewards customers for healthy living and the 33-year principal sponsor of the Boston […]

    Life Insurance Owners Getting Satisfied: Survey

    {October 19th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Consumer satisfaction with life insurance companies hit a record high in the JD Power 2017 U.S. Life Insurance Study. Better economic conditions, favorable pricing and higher customer engagement helped raise satisfaction levels, the company reported. The average overall customer satisfaction index ranking of life insurers rose to 785 points, 16 index points higher than last […]

    Fearless Girl Statue Is Not a Statement of Accomplishment: State Street

    {October 19th, 2017} by Emily Zulz

    Is State Street committed to pay equity? “Absolutely,” Brie Williams, head of practice management at State Street Global Advisors, said during the Raymond James Women’s Symposium last week. Click HERE to read the original story via ThinkAdvisor.  The question is a valid one. Earlier this month, the firm behind the “Fearless Girl” statue agreed to […]

    DOL Rule Delay Expected to Fuel 2018 Annuity Sales Spike

    {October 19th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    The expected 18-month delay in the Department of Labor fiduciary rule will drive a healthy 2018 annuity sales rebound, analysts say. New sales of individual U.S. fixed and variable annuities are forecast to grow 5 percent in 2018, LIMRA analysts said. In the spring, before the delay was announced, LIMRA forecast up to a 15 […]

    Consumer Claims Jackson National Life Insurance Company Breached Contract

    {October 18th, 2017} by Erin Gilmore

    Jackson National Life Insurance Company is facing a proposed class action filed by a California consumer who claims the defendant broke its contractual duties to its life insurance policyholders by adding undisclosed charges to the monthly fees deducted from their accumulated funds. The case explains that the plaintiff purchased an insurance policy from the defendant […]

    Insurer Group Promotes Indexed Annuities in New Video

    {October 17th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    A coalition of eight life insurers is working to promote indexed annuities in a new animated video aimed at consumers. The group, the Indexed Annuity Leadership Council, has posted the video, “How to Tell FIA Facts From FIA Fiction,” on YouTube.    The new IALC video is a sequel to other IALC indexed annuity videos, including “Get the Basics […]

    Brokers support Finra ranking of reps to identify bad apples as long as list stays private

    {October 17th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    Brokers and securities compliance experts support Finra’s effort to rank registered representatives and target those it believes pose the biggest threat to investors — as long as the broker-dealer regulator keeps the list to itself. Susan Axelrod, Finra executive vice president for regulatory operations, said Monday that the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. has ranked […]

    Nearly Half—48%—of Investors Own an Annuity

    {October 17th, 2017} by Lee Barney, EDITORS@STRATEGIC-I.COM

    The acceptance and use of annuities—and the tremendous appetite for the guaranteed income that they offer—are more widely accepted than many retirement plan advisers and investors realize, Jackson National Life found in a study conducted for the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI), “The Language of Retirement 2017: Advisor and Consumer Attitudes Toward Income in Retirement.”  According […]

    Pat Gallagher explains what makes him most proud about AJG

    {October 17th, 2017} by Sam Boyer

    Businesses success can be determined in so many ways – by profit, by revenue, by the number of deals made, by market share. But Arthur J. Gallagher chairman, president, and CEO Pat Gallagher has a different measure of success. When he spoke with Insurance Business recently, he didn’t count as his greatest corporate achievement the […]

    Guardian’s Top Annuity Sales Executive Says the Excitement Is Back

    {October 17th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    A player in the U.S. annuity distribution market says the individual annuity market really does look better now than it did just a few months ago. Jim Lake, a vice president at the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, heads the Guardian’s life, disability insurance, and retirement products sales operation. He took the heat as low-interest rates and uncertainty about regulations pounded sales starting […]

    Making Life Insurance Make Sense to the Women’s Market

    {October 17th, 2017} by Megan Rafferty

      As women’s average salaries and business ownership continue to grow, life insurance firms recognize marketing to women as a valuable opportunity. A  thorough understanding of how to work with women is key for advisors who are considering selling to this growing market. With both significant challenges and opportunities in the life insurance market, advisors […]

    DOL fiduciary rule delay boosts prospects for annuity sales

    {October 17th, 2017} by Greg Iacurci

    A proposed delay to the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule is leading to big increases in annuity sales projections next year. The regulation, which raises investment-advice standards in retirement accounts, was expected to put a severe dent in product sales, especially for variable and indexed annuities. That slump has been playing out since the rule […]

    Tax Reform a Mixed Bag for Life Insurers

    {October 17th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    The Trump administration’s tax reform plan to cut corporate tax rates will generally favor life and annuity companies, but could cause some executives to take a more conservative management approach, analysts say. The White House is pressing Congress to pass a plan by the end of the year, but some legislative analysts remain skeptical that […]

    IUL Premium Growth Nearly 3X Industry Average In 2Q

    {October 17th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Indexed universal life (IUL) was a rock star among life insurance products in the second quarter, according to LIMRA data. Although annualized premiums for all major life insurance products showed gains in the second quarter, IUL was the primary driver behind those gains. New annualized IUL premium rose 8 percent in the second quarter, nearly […]

    Finra ranking brokers in effort to crack down on industry’s bad apples

    {October 17th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    As part of its crackdown on rogue brokers, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. has ranked all 634,403 registered reps it regulates and is targeting those who it believes pose the biggest threat to investors, a Finra executive said Monday. Susan Axelrod, Finra’s executive vice president for regulatory operations, said the rankings are based on […]

    Fee-Based Annuities and the Fiduciary Rule: One Size Doesn’t Fit All

    {October 17th, 2017} by Robert Bloink, and William H. Byrnes

    Despite the extended delay of the Department of Labor fiduciary rule, insurance carriers have wasted no time in introducing a line of annuity products designed to fit within the rule’s constraints.  Click HERE to read the original story via ThinkAdvisor. Thus far, fee-based annuities have seemed like the product of choice for advisors who wish to […]

    5 Things to Know About Valuing Annuities and Other Client Assets

    {October 16th, 2017} by Stephan R. Leimberg, L. Paul Hood, Jr., Jay Katz, Edwin P. Morrow, and Martin M. Shenkman

    Here’s a look, by advanced planning specialists, at valuation planning, a topic of great interest to anyone who wants to start to think about the high-net-worth market. “Valuation planning” describes any technique used to affect the valuation of property or business interests for gift, estate, or generation-skipping transfer tax purposes. THIS THINKADVISOR STORY IS EXCERPTED FROM: Click HERE […]

    FINRA Data Shows 15-Year Decline in BDs

    {October 16th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority made live on Monday statistics regarding the “trend line” detailing the number of broker-dealers entering and leaving the profession. Click HERE to read the original story via ThinkAdvisor.  FINRA CEO Robert Cook noted Thursday at an event held by the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association the decline in the number of […]

    Commonwealth CEO Upbeat on DOL Fiduciary, ‘RIA-zation’

    {October 16th, 2017} by Janet Levaux

    John Rooney warmly greeted more than 860 advisors and about 810 other guests at Commonwealth Financial Network’s nationwide gathering, which recently took place in San Diego. “It’s been 17 years since we moved to San Diego [to open Commonwealth’s West Coast headquarters], and we’re finally hosting the national conference in America’s finest city,” explained the […]

    Q2 Bank Annuity Sales Start to Firm Up

    {October 16th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    Banks and other financial institutions are telling LIMRA that U.S. annuity sales totals started to look better in the second quarter. Financial institutions reported that they generated $9.7 billion in individual annuity sales from April through June. That total is 9.3% lower than the comparable total for the second quarter of 2016. But the year-over-year […]

    Fidelity Investments® Introduces New Annuity: IncomeSource® Series from Western & Southern Financial Group

    {October 16th, 2017} by Fidelity Investments

    October 16, 2017 09:35 AM Eastern Daylight Time BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Fidelity Investments® today announced the addition of IncomeSource®, a Single Premium Immediate Annuity underwritten by two Western & Southern Financial Group (“Western & Southern”) member companies, to the Fidelity Insurance Network®. The first Western & Southern annuity to be offered in Fidelity’s product line-up, it enables […]

    Schwab TV Ads Tout Advisors’ Fiduciary Status

    {October 16th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    Schwab Advisor Services is touting the fiduciary status of the independent advisors who custody assets at the firm. Schwab’s “Independent Difference” TV spots started airing Monday on CNBC and Fox Business Network, showcasing independent advisors from across the nation. They are designed to put “independent advisors front and center.” Click HERE to read the original […]

    IRS warns of scam targeting annuity, life insurance accounts

    {October 16th, 2017} by Financial Services Roundtable

    The IRS has issued a warning to financial professionals about cybercriminals trying to gain access to clients’ annuity and life insurance accounts. In one such scam, the criminals impersonated a company that supplies computer cloud services and attempted to obtain tax professionals’ usernames and passwords. Click HERE to read the original story via InvestmentNews; registration […]

    House Committee Passes Fiduciary Rule Alternative

    {October 13th, 2017} by John Hilton

    The House Financial Services Committee approved The Protecting Advice for Small Savers (PASS) Act of 2017, legislation introduced by Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo. The bill establishes a standard of conduct for broker dealers that would be enforced by the SEC. Passed out of committee Thursday, the legislation also encourages state insurance regulators to adopt a […]

    FP50 2017: Which IBDs made the most in annuity sales?

    {October 13th, 2017} by Tobias Salinger

    FP50 2017: Which IBDs made the most in annuity sales? Annuity revenue fell for eight of the top 10 sellers on Financial Planning‘s annual FP50 ranking of independent broker-dealers. Sales of all kinds of annuities have fallen across the industry to a 16-year low, and experts attribute much of the dropoff to the fiduciary rule. Still, the No. […]

    Florida insurance agent charged in complex scam

    {October 13th, 2017} by Ryan Smith

    A Florida insurance agent has been arrested for allegedly orchestrating a complex insurance scam. Jose Caballero-Morlesin, an owner of Miami-based Axis Underwriters, is accused of enlisting a finance company to pay annual premiums tied to phony insurance applications, according to the Florida Department of Financial Services (DFS). Caballero allegedly submitted a total of 38 fake […]

    Committee Advances 22 Bills Forward for House Consideration

    {October 12th, 2017} by Press Release

    Washington, October 12, 2017 – WASHINGTON – The Financial Services Committee on Thursday approved 22 bills, largely bipartisan and largely aimed at helping smaller banks, credit unions, and emerging growth companies. Chairman Hensarling (R-TX) told committee members the bills will promote access to capital, reduce the regulatory burden “that slows our economy and makes it harder for people […]

    Fake Insurance Tax Form Scam Aims at Stealing Data from Tax Pros, Clients

    {October 12th, 2017} by IRS

    IR-2017-171, Oct. 12, 2017 WASHINGTON – The Internal Revenue Service today alerted tax professionals and their clients to a fake insurance tax form scam that is being used to access annuity and life insurance accounts. Cybercriminals currently are combining several tactics to create a complex scheme through which both tax professionals and taxpayers have been […]

    House panel approves legislation to kill DOL fiduciary rule, and 2 other adviser-related bills

    {October 12th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    The House Financial Services Committee on Thursday approved legislation that would kill the Labor Department fiduciary rule and replace it with an investment advice regulation to be written by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required.

    Finra cracks down on faulty variable annuity exchanges

    {October 12th, 2017} by Greg Iacurci

    Finra is continuing its crackdown on variable annuity misconduct this year, following a blistering year of fines related to VA sales in 2016. Two recent enforcement actions from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. demonstrate the watchdog’s attention on variable annuities, especially faulty annuity exchanges. Click HERE to read the full story via IvestmentNews; registration […]

    Industry Groups Warn DOL Against Picking ‘Winners and Losers’

    {October 12th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Regulators should remove their “clear bias” toward fee-based products and stay away from picking “winners and losers,” as they seek to amend key parts of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule, industry groups say. The DOL’s preference for “clean (fund) shares” and fee-based annuities shows the DOL is more interested in developing fee-for-service models and […]

    Advisor’s death in Vegas shooting leaves RIA firm struggling on multiple fronts

    {October 12th, 2017} by Suleman Din

    As Steve Berger’s colleagues at EFS Advisors were setting up a memorial fund for his family, they were also wrestling with a business problem: There wasn’t a strong continuity plan for his practice. Berger, a financial advisor, was killed in the Oct. 1 mass shooting in Las Vegas, and his death shook the tight-knit hybrid […]

    Will fixed index annuities rebound in the fiduciary era?

    {October 12th, 2017} by Tobias Salinger

    Debate over the fiduciary rule cast annuities in a harsh light, resulting in a recent sales slump, but fixed index annuity issuers and distributors remain optimistic. Few firms have slammed the Department of Labor rule more vocally than annuity firms and their advocates. The Trump administration pushed back full implementation of the rule by 18 months, but experts have […]

    Bill Bainbridge Named Senior Vice President of Product for Voya’s Annuities and Individual Life businesses

    {October 12th, 2017} by Voya

    THURSDAY, OCTOBER 12, 2017 WEST CHESTER, Pa., Oct. 12, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), announced today that Bill Bainbridge, FSA, MAAA, CERA has been appointed senior vice president and leader of all product development and in-force management for the company’s Annuities and Individual Life businesses. He will oversee a team of more than 40 professionals […]

    FINRA sanctions broker for alleged sideline selling annuities

    {October 11th, 2017} by Margarida Correia

    A broker who ran a thriving business secretly selling annuities while employed at U.S. Bank was suspended for four months and fined $7,500 for his undisclosed business venture, according to his recent settlement with FINRA. Charles Cumber allegedly sold $2.63 million in equity-indexed annuities to 20 individuals, 13 of them customers of U.S. Bancorp Investments, […]

    Annuity-Friendly Nominee at DOL

    {October 11th, 2017} by Kerry Pechter

    Donald Trump’s nominee for the top job at the Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration will be Preston Rutledge of the Senate Finance Committee staff, according to press reports yesterday. If nominated and approved, he’d replace Phyllis Borzi, who authored the Obama administration’s fiduciary rule. If the reports about the nomination in PoliticoPro are […]

    Athene Holding’s Wheeler joins ACLI board

    {October 11th, 2017} by Record Staff

    The American Council of Life Insurers has elected William Wheeler, president of Athene Holding Ltd., to its board of directors. Wheeler, who has more than 30 years of insurance and financial services experience, joined Athene Holding in September 2015. The Bermuda-based holding company oversees business units that include West Des Moines-based Athene USA. Before joining […]

    Insurers Get Creative With Products in Delayed Fiduciary World

    {October 11th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Retirement product development against the backdrop of a delayed Department of Labor fiduciary rule is leading to a more mature view of the regulation, an insurance industry expert said Monday. The upshot of the product activity indicates a more nuanced approach to the DOL landscape compared to spring 2016. At that time, insurers and distributors […]

    It’s time for the life insurance industry to ditch illustration comparisons

    {October 10th, 2017} by Barry Flagg

    The life insurance industry is “married” to illustration comparisons. This is not to say policy reviews aren’t needed. Life insurance is the last, largest, most-neglected asset on the client’s balance sheet. As is often the case, neglect breeds poor-performance, and life insurance is no exception, having been among the worst-performing assets relative to clients’ expectations […]

    AXA Financial Extends Grace Periods On Policies

    {October 10th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Four AXA Financial insurers have relaxed the premium payment grace period for life, health and disability policyholders throughout Florida, U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico in the wake of hurricanes Irma and Maria. Premium payments toward contracts underwritten by AXA Equitable Life, .(formerly The Equitable Life Assurance Society of the U.S.), AXA Equitable Life and […]

    Tough Lessons Fuel the Rise of Hybrid Variable Annuities

    {October 10th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Life and annuity insurers, with memories still fresh about promises they struggled to keep, don’t want to make the same mistakes twice. More than a decade ago, insurers sold variable annuities with generous promises policyholders couldn’t refuse. But when interest rates collapsed after the financial crisis, companies were on the hook for contracts paying 8 […]

    Wife Accused of Killing Husband Can Sue Insurer That Froze Life Insurance Proceeds

    {October 10th, 2017} by Steven A. Meyerowitz

    This story is reprinted with permission from FC&S Legal, the industry’s only comprehensive digital resource designed for insurance coverage law professionals. Visit the website to subscribe. A federal district court in Georgia has refused to dismiss claims brought against a life insurer by a wife accused of killing her husband after the insurer froze the account into which it had previously deposited […]

    SIFMA: State-level fiduciary rules would confuse investors

    {October 10th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    A major financial industry trade association is warning today that state-level fiduciary duty laws would confuse investors and financial advisers rather than deliver the protections envisioned by the measures. In testimony today in Las Vegas, Lisa Bleier, managing director of public policy and advocacy for the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, plans to tell […]

    Voya Financial Schedules Announcement of Third-Quarter 2017 Results

    {October 10th, 2017} by Voya Financial

    NEW YORK, Oct. 9, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), announced today that it will host a webcast and conference call on its third-quarter 2017 earnings on Wednesday, November 1, 2017, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. (ET). Voya will issue a press release announcing the company’s financial results for the third quarter of 2017 after the […]

    A.M. Best Benchmarking Analysis Shows Most U.S. Life/Annuity Insurers Well-Capitalized; Impact from Methodology Changes Likely to Be Minimal

    {October 10th, 2017} by A.M. Best

    OLDWICK, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–An A.M. Best analysis of the U.S. life/annuity (L/A) industry under the rating agency’s revised Best’s Credit Rating Methodology (BCRM) and its new building block approach revealed that approximately one-third of the rated population had the strongest category of balance sheet strength. The Best’s Special Report, titled “U.S. Life/Annuity Industry – Building Block Approach Confirms Well […]

    AXA Financial Extends Grace Periods On Policies

    {October 10th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Four AXA Financial insurers have relaxed the premium payment grace period for life, health and disability policyholders throughout Florida, U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico in the wake of hurricanes Irma and Maria. Premium payments toward contracts underwritten by AXA Equitable Life, .(formerly The Equitable Life Assurance Society of the U.S.), AXA Equitable Life and […]

    ACLI Elects 2018 Chairman and Board of Directors

    {October 10th, 2017} by ACLI

    Mark Mullin of Transamerica Elected ACLI Chairman Washington, D.C. (October 9, 2017) — The American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI), whose member companies provide financial and retirement security to 75 million American families, elected its chairman, officers and board of directors at the ACLI 2017 Annual Conference.   Mark Mullin, president and CEO of Transamerica, was […]

    7 Exclusions From the Fiduciary Rule ‘Investment Advice’ Definition

    {October 10th, 2017} by Marcia S. Wagner, J.D., Stephen J. Migausky, J.D., and Livia Quan Aber

    The U.S. Department of Labor could, ultimately, still implement its fiduciary rule. The scope of the rule is quite broad, but the DOL has created several exclusions from its new definition of “investment advice.” So long as communications or transactions fall under one of the excluded categories, they will not be deemed to be fiduciary advice, even if […]

    Insurers Should Digitize Retirement Services Sales: McKinsey

    {October 10th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    Making more use of website sales systems and call centers could increase insurers’ sales of life and annuity products to U.S. retirement savers. Consultants at McKinsey & Company make that argument in a new report based on a recent survey of about 4,600 U.S. adults. The consultants are releasing the report as the country is heading into National […]

    Dan LaBert to Lead NAILBA

    {October 10th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    The National Association of Independent Life Brokerage Agencies has picked a veteran association manager to run its operations. The Fairfax, Virginia-based group says Dan LaBert will be its new chief executive officer. NAILBA represents the interests of independent wholesale life brokerage agencies. Click HERE to read the original story via ThinkAdvisor. The head of a major outreach campaign […]

    5 Top Annuity Videos of the Year

    {October 10th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    One way to find out what’s happening in the annuity market now is to play with your computer. Interest rates have been low. Regulations have been complicated. Hurricanes have eaten into prospects’ planning time, by forcing them to focus on near-term disaster prep, instead of the long-range kind. Click HERE to read the original story via ThinkAdvisor. But, now, […]

    New annuities sparked by fiduciary rule ‘disruption’

    {October 10th, 2017} by Tobias Salinger

    The fiduciary rule has helped drive a slump in annuity sales, but products emerging in its wake could reverse the downward trend, experts say. The space has seen big changes. In the third quarter, sales dropped to their lowest level since 2001, according to the LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute. Fixed sales outpaced those of variable annuities for the […]

    Ohio National introduces new indexed universal life insurance

    {October 10th, 2017} by Globe Newswire

    CINCINNATI, Oct. 09, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Ohio National Financial Services is pleased to introduce a new indexed universal life (IUL) insurance product that offers the flexibility and protection of a universal life policy with indexed account options to help build cash value. “The Virtus IUL policy provides the protection component our clients need and […]

    Barriers to Accelerated Underwriting Beginning to Crumble

    {October 10th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Accelerated underwriting began breaking down the remaining barriers to a digital world of life insurance distribution last year thanks to new technologies and services provided by large insurers and start-ups alike, according to a new report. Life insurance application and issuance, two of three steps necessary before buyers receive coverage, have been digitized for years. […]

    Brokers Violating DOL Rule by Shifting Clients to Fee Accounts: Roper

    {October 9th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    The Consumer Federation of America is urging regulators to investigate incidences of broker-dealers shifting retirement savers into fee-based accounts from less expensive commission accounts, which violates the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule. Click HERE to read the original story via ThinkAdvisor.  Since Labor’s rule was finalized, “industry lobbyists have repeatedly claimed that brokerage firms are responding […]

    Insurance industry is ‘terrific future for young people’: Patrick G. Ryan

    {October 6th, 2017} by Bethan Moorcraft

    The insurance industry is a fantastic place for young professionals – but it’s not doing a great job of getting that message across. A lot of people in the industry are concerned about the undeniable age gap in the insurance workforce. There’s a widespread lack of understanding among younger generations about what the industry actually […]

    SEC begins working with DoL on fiduciary rule

    {October 6th, 2017} by Kenneth Corbin

    The SEC has begun to work with the Department of Labor on a fiduciary rule proposal to harmonize the standards of conduct for advisors and broker-dealers, Jay Clayton, the agency’s chairman, told members of the House Financial Services Committee. Clayton’s comments suggest that after months of collecting and reviewing comments on what a uniform fiduciary […]

    House GOP Members Press Fight Against DOL Rule

    {October 6th, 2017} by John Hilton

    While the most disliked aspects of Department of Labor fiduciary rule are expected to be officially delayed any day now, lawmakers continue to push legislative alternatives. Last week, Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo., introduced a bill to create a new advisory standard somewhere between fiduciary and suitability. It would amend the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 […]

    Regarding Kerry Pechter’s article, “Don’t Mess Up a Good Thing”

    {October 6th, 2017} by Sheryl J. Moore

    A note regarding Kerry Pechter’s article, “Don’t Mess Up a Good Thing,” from October 5, 2017’s Retirement Income Journal:   There are inaccuracies in this article and comments that I made, which were taken out-of-context in this piece. I was out-of-town for a speaking engagement when the author asked for feedback on some commentary; I […]

    Life Insurance as a Retirement Asset

    {October 5th, 2017} by John Dallas

    One of the notable changes in the American economy over the last couple of decades has been the virtual disappearance of the steady 40-year career with one employer. It has been replaced with a culture where workers move from job to job, sometimes combining multiple part-time gigs to stitch together a required income. This new workforce […]

    TIAA Calls for More Annuities in Workplace Retirement Plans

    {October 5th, 2017} by Michael S. Fischer

    Few workplace savings plans provide resources such as annuities to guarantee that savings will last throughout retirement, according to a recent white paper from TIAA. This “guarantee gap,” it says, undermines the very purpose of the retirement savings plan system, which is to minimize the risk of both poverty among retirees and strain on the social safety […]

    SEC ‘Working on’ Fiduciary Rule, Concerned About State Laws: Clayton

    {October 5th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton told lawmakers Wednesday that the agency is “working on” a fiduciary rule proposal and that he’s concerned about the state fiduciary standards that are cropping up. Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo., asked Clayton during a hearing held by the House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday if he was “concerned about […]

    SEC chief Jay Clayton tells lawmakers agency is drafting its own fiduciary duty rule

    {October 5th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton told lawmakers on Wednesday that the agency is drafting a proposal for a fiduciary rule. The agency is trying to catch up with the Department of Labor, which partially implemented its own fiduciary rule in June and is currently conducting a review of the regulation’s enforcement mechanisms as ordered by […]

    Delaware Life Begins to Make its FIA Mark

    {October 5th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Last month’s rebranding of Delaware Life Holdings to Group One Thousand One comes in the wake of successful efforts by subsidiary Delaware Life Insurance to boost its distribution network, according to analysts. Last year Delaware Life Insurance, based in Waltham, Mass., added new IMOs and five new independent broker-dealers (IBD) to its distribution network, according […]

    AIG Assets Surge by `Billions of Dollars’ With Digital Push

    {October 5th, 2017} by Sonali Basak, and Julie Verhage

    American International Group Inc., the 98-year-old insurer and retirement planner, is finding being tech-savvy pays off. Consumers are pumping cash into a unit that oversees $244 billion in client assets after it invested in digital platforms to make the process easier, according to the head of the division, Kevin Hogan. “We believe our assets are up […]

    Auctus Hopes to Offer Blockchain-Based Annuity Distribution

    {October 5th, 2017} by Allison Bell

    Managers of Auctus, an international blockchain technology startup, say they want to set up a blockchain-technology-based annuity distribution system by the end of 2018. The annuity exchange would be part of a blockchain-based pension plan platform aimed at employers. Auctus managers are now preparing to sell “Ether tokens,” or digital value contracts based on the Ethereum token standard, to raise cash […]

    3 Ways Fixed Annuities Can Outperform Bond Mutual Funds

    {October 5th, 2017} by Chris Conklin

    Risky vs. safe. How often do you break down that concept with your clients regarding their financial asset allocation? Determining what portion of a client’s finances should be used for “risky” investments to maximize growth potential and “safe” options to ensure preservation of capital is one of the first — and most important — conversations a […]

    Delay of fiduciary rule likely to be challenged in court

    {October 5th, 2017} by Nick Thornton

    Consumer advocates question Labor’s legal authority to issue delay The Labor Department’s proposal to delay the full implementation of the fiduciary rule to July 2019 will likely meet a legal challenge from consumer advocate groups, according to several sources. “If they finalize the delay as it is proposed, Labor should expect a legal challenge,” said Micah Hauptman, […]

    Consumer Federation of America claims brokerage firms may be violating DOL fiduciary rule

    {October 5th, 2017} by Jeff Benjamin

    The Consumer Federation of America is calling on multiple regulatory bodies to “investigate potential rule violations related to broker-dealer firms’ improper implementation” of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule. In letters sent this week to Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Jay Clayton, and Finra CEO Robert Cook, the CFA challenges as […]

    Best of Des Moines Winners 2017 

    {October 5th, 2017} by Jamie Johnson

    Which insurers took the honors for the Business Record’s annual Best of Des Moines poll results? Click HERE to view the full results.  Principal topped out Best Life Insurance Company, Best Company to Work For, Best Company for Young Professionals, Best Company for Diversity in the Workplace, Best Company for Women to Work For, Best […]

    New York Life Announces New Employee Benefit to Ease the Burden of Student Loans

    {October 4th, 2017} by New York Life

    NEW YORK,NY (PRWEB) OCTOBER 03, 2017 Recognizing the stress and financial burden that student debt can create, New York Life has launched a student loan repayment program offering up to $10,200 over five years for eligible employees*, as well as student loan advice and online planning tools. Through the new benefit, employees who have taken out […]

    Northwestern Mutual Named Top Company for Women Technologists

    {October 4th, 2017} by Northwestern Mutual

      MILWAUKEE, Oct. 4, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Northwestern Mutual announced today it has been named one of the Top Companies for Women Technologists 2017 by the Anita Borg Institute, an international organization founded on the belief that women are vital to building technology that the world needs. The announcement was made at the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing Conference […]

    IMO Chief Dan Charley Recounts Living Through Irma

    {October 4th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Little more than a week ago, I was riding in the back of a plane from Philadelphia to Palm Beach sitting in the very last row of a single-aisle Embraer 190 aircraft. I was making my way south to The Breakers hotel and conference center for the annual meeting of the Insured Retirement Institute, the […]

    Alabama Securities Director Borg Steps Up as NASAA President

    {October 4th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    Alabama Securities Commission Director Joseph Borg on Tuesday began a one-year term as the new president of the North American Securities Administrators Association. Borg, who for the past year has been serving as NASAA’s president-elect, said in a Tuesday speech at NASAA’s annual conference in Seattle that while enforcement against fraud is “the heart” of […]

    MassMutual: Latinos Feel Less Secure and Worry More About Money Than Other Americans

    {October 3rd, 2017} by PRNewswire

    SPRINGFIELD, Mass., Oct. 2, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Middle-income Latinos in the workforce say they feel less financially secure and worry more about money than other Americans, posing higher hurdles to planning for retirement and building wealth, according to new research commissioned by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). Amongst the key findings: Emergency preparedness Three […]

    North American Introduces Fixed Index Annuity with First-to-Market Liquidity Rider

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Globe Newswire

    CHICAGO, Oct. 03, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — North American Company for Life and Health Insurance® today released the NAC VersaChoice 10, a fixed index annuity with an optional rider that allows clients to have more access to more of their money sooner, the first of its kind on the market. “Retirement savers want three fundamental things […]

    Armed forces personnel need the help of financial advisers

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Jeff Benjamin

    Last year, when financial planner Christy Raines helped a military widow invest part of a life insurance death benefit, it underscored both the challenges and the need for financial planning among the nation’s vast military community. “A lot of people in the military just don’t have the assets that would appeal to most financial advisers, but I […]

    7 Ways the New Tax Fight Could Hit Annuities

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Allison Bell

    For the people who create and sell annuities and other insurance-based retirement planning products, the start of high-energy efforts in Washington to update federal tax rules and programs is creating hope, and fear. The efforts could make the economy more efficient, put more money in consumers’ pockets, and leave consumers in a better position to prepare for […]

    Reality Check: Annuities in a Fiduciary World

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Scott Stolz

    I put the finishing touches on this article just hours after the Department of Labor (DOL) proposed an 18-month delay to the fiduciary rule. Now we will have to wait and see how the rule might be changed during this delay. Regardless of the final version of the DOL rule, there is little doubt that […]

    Fed’s Yellen Said Vote to Free AIG Was Based on Firm’s Changes

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Jesse Hamilton

    Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said freeing American International Group Inc. from the tight scrutiny tied to its too-big-to-fail label is an example of the process working properly — proving that a systemically important financial institution can make itself less risky. “AIG has largely sold off or wound down its capital markets businesses, and has become a smaller […]

    Rep. Wagner Introduces Bill to Kill DOL Fiduciary Rule

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

    Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo., introduced Wednesday her bill to repeal the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule. Wagner said on Sept. 7 that she would introduce her bill, the Protecting Access for Small Savers Act, which keeps a fiduciary rulemaking under the Securities and Exchange Commission’s jurisdiction, by the end of September and would push for a […]

    What Happens When You Outlive Your Life Insurance Policy?

    {October 3rd, 2017} by MoneyTips, Contributor

    Congratulations! You made it to your 100th birthday. You’ve joined an exclusive, but growing, group of centenarians. The 2010 U.S. Census counted 53,364 centenarians, as compared to 32,194 in 1980. (I doubt anyone was counted in both tallies.) You probably received many presents and lots of adoration from your family, but you may have also […]

    The Surprise ‘Expiration Date’ On Life Insurance Policies

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Darwin Bayston

    The Wall Street Journal recently brought attention to a problem that is quietly impacting the estates of Americans who are fortunate enough to realize their 100th birthdays: the expiration of the life insurance policies they believed to be permanent assets. Some whole and universal life insurance policies in force today were designed to cover the […]

    What does the US, EU insurance agreement really mean?

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Lucy Hook

    On Monday, we brought you the news that the European Union and the US had signed an agreement to update international insurance and reinsurance regulations and free up capital for investments – a significant move for the industry on both sides of the pond. But while there has been much talk about the importance of the deal, […]

    Bestow Partners with Munich Re, Sammons to Develop Life Insurance Products

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Anthony R. O’Donnell

    Bestow Inc. (Dallas), a startup digital life insurance distribution company, has embarked on a partnership with Munich American Reassurance Company (Princeton, N.J.), the U.S. life and disability reinsurance division of Munich Re, and North American Company for Life and Health Insurance, a member company of Sammons Financial Group (Chicago), to develop new life insurance products for Bestow’s distribution platform. Bestow’s […]

    The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company Sponsors the Premiership Rugby American Series Match

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Penn Mutual

    Philadelphia, PA. – September 7, 2017 – The Penn Mutual Life Insurance Company (Penn Mutual), alongside partners AEG Rugby, Premiership Rugby, and NBC Sports, is proud to announce the company’s role as presenting sponsor of the Premiership Rugby American Series.  The Series event, which will take place over the next four years, will be held on September 16 in Philadelphia, […]

    Lincoln Financial Group Continues Sponsorship of American Paralympian Jeff Glasbrenner as He Embarks on “Explorers Grand Slam”

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Lincoln Financial Group

    RADNOR, Pa.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Lincoln Financial Group today announced its continued sponsorship of Jeff Glasbrenner, a Paralympic athlete, who in 2016, became the first American amputee to summit Mt. Everest. Lincoln Financial sponsored Glasbrenner during his journey to the top of Everest, and will continue the partnership as he sets out to achieve his subsequent goals over the […]

    Raymond James Launches Magazine For Women Planners

    {October 3rd, 2017} by FA Staff

    Raymond James announced the launch of Aspire to Greater, a publication oriented toward female advisors. Aspire to Greater will be published biannually with expert features, advisor success stories, planning tips, tales of community involvement and practice management suggestions. “This publication is an investment in women, an ode to those who have traversed the rocky path […]

    4 Facts About New York’s New Life And Annuity Premium Rule

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Allison Bell

    Insurance regulators in New York state are getting ready to implement a new regulation that could affect how life insurers implement some types of premium increases and parameter changes involving in-force life insurance policies and annuities. Click HERE to read the original article via ThinkAdvisor. New York regulators began working on the regulation in 2008, in part in response […]

    NAFA MEMBER ALERT – NAFA IS FIGHTING TO PROTECT FIXED ANNUITIES

    {October 3rd, 2017} by NAFA

    WASHINGTON (October 2, 2017) — We are just a little over a week away from our fall Annuity Distribution Summit, and I wanted to share some information regarding some developments related to the DOL fiduciary rule and federal tax reform. On Friday, September 29, 2017, NAFA filed its reply brief in the DC Circuit Court of Appeals in […]

    This financial app gamifies retirement planning

    {October 3rd, 2017} by ANDREI TIBURCA

    Learning about retirement planning can seem like a tall order, but it doesn’t have to be. Gamifying its key concepts can help people get educated about an important area of life. Launched in October, Master of Retirement is an online game that lets users invest pretend money to get insights into the state of financial […]

    Western & Southern Ad Campaign Kicks Off on NFL Telecasts

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Western & Southern

    For football fans, nothing surpasses the NFL season — cheering crowds, touchdown dances and months of top-flight competition. For producers with Western & Southern Financial Group member companies, this season brings added excitement. Beginning with Sunday Night Football on October 1, Western & Southern will debut a multi-media advertising campaign. Look for the effort to […]

    Voya Financial Named a 2017 “Great Place to Work”

    {October 3rd, 2017} by Voya

    TUESDAY, OCTOBER 3, 2017 NEW YORK, Oct. 3, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), announced today that it has been certified as a 2017 Great Place to Work by the independent analysts at Great Place to Work®— the global authority on high-trust, high-performance workplace cultures — for the second consecutive year. “We take pride in being a […]

    A closer look at AIG’s recovery

    {October 2nd, 2017} by Bloomberg

    The US government and American International Group Inc. have parted ways again, and for the insurer it’s the end of a nine-year journey of retrenchment and reinvention.  Friday’s announcement by the Financial Stability Oversight Council that it canceled AIG’s designation as a systemically important financial institution is a milestone in the company’s history. The New York-based […]

    Genworth and China Oceanwide Hint at U.S. Panel National Security Concerns

    {October 2nd, 2017} by Allison Bell

    Federal regulators seem to have raised questions about national security concerns in connection with efforts by China Oceanwide Holdings Group Co. Ltd. to acquire Genworth Financial Inc. The companies refer today to the concerns in an announcement about plans to withdraw and refile their joint voluntary notice for the deal with the Committee on Foreign […]

    Female Firm Owners More Likely Than Men to Be Financial Planners

    {October 1st, 2017} by Emily Zulz

    Women are more likely than men to run financial planning practices, according to the September 2017 issue of The Cerulli Edge – U.S. Monthly Product Trends Edition. Female advisors in the early stages of their career report entering the profession because they have an interest in helping people reach their financial goals. This is a major […]

    Weatherford Era Comes To A Close At IRI

    {October 1st, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

    Last week’s announcement that Insured Retirement Institute president and CEO Cathy Weatherford would retire next year brings to an end her decade-long effort to broaden the IRI’s appeal beyond the variable annuity industry. In hindsight, enlarging the tent to include other segments of the annuity industry was perhaps the single most important strategic decision authorized by the […]

    A.M. Best Affirms Credit Ratings of Ameriprise Financial, Inc. and Its Subsidiaries

    {October 1st, 2017} by Best's News Service

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE OLDWICK – SEPTEMBER 28, 2017 A.M. Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating (Long-Term ICR) of “aa-” of RiverSource Life Insurance Company (Minneapolis, MN) and its wholly owned subsidiary, RiverSource Life Insurance Co. of New York (Albany, NY). A.M. Best also has affirmed the FSR of A […]

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