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Blog + Articles

Here’s What to Expect if You Sell Annuities

{August 17th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

Over the next three years, retail life and annuity agents and financial advisors can expect simpler annuity structures, more fee-based annuities and fewer riders and income guarantees in product rollouts, a consultant said Wednesday. The days when annuities giants pumped out an “overwhelming volume of complex, tough-to-understand annuity products are gone,” said Chris Eberly, vice […]

Women close work gap with men

{August 17th, 2017} by Business Record Staff

More women are joining the workforce as more men are staying away, leaving the smallest gap in “participation rate” since records began in 1948, Bloomberg reported. The share of 25- to 54-year-old women either employed or seeking employment hit a seven-year high in July. The 0.3 percentage point increase for women left the gap between […]

Brighthouse Flicks On The Switch

{August 17th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

Brighthouse Financial, the newest major life and annuity distributor in the U.S., moved quickly to expand its product line in time for its spinoff from MetLife earlier this month. But has it moved quickly enough? So far, it’s been a tough start for Brighthouse, which began regular-way trading on Aug. 7. Click HERE to read […]

DOL Has No Authority For Fiduciary Rule, DC Circ. Told

{August 17th, 2017} by Carmen Germaine

Law360, New York (August 16, 2017, 8:02 PM EDT) — The National Association for Fixed Annuities urged the D.C. Circuit on Tuesday to revive the group’s challenge to the U.S. Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule for retirement account advisers, saying the regulation threatens to upend the fixed annuities industry and exceeds the agency’s authority. NAFA filed […]

LPL Buys NPH

{August 15th, 2017} by Janet Levaux

LPL Financial confirmed industry speculation late Tuesday, saying it would buy National Planning Holdings’ four broker-dealers: National Planning Corp., Invest Financial, Investment Centers of America and SII Investments. While LPL has about 14,300 advisors and $540 billion in assets, the four NPH broker-dealers have about 3,200 advisors with $120 billion of assets — putting the combined […]

Life insurance medical exam may soon be a thing of the past

{August 15th, 2017} by Julie Campbell

Technology and data services may soon provide an accurate and cost-effective replacement to health tests. A life insurance medical exam is often one of the most dreaded parts of applying for that type of coverage. That said, as systems and data continue to improve, this requirement may not be needed for much longer. This could […]

DOL fiduciary rule: Indexed, variable annuities big winners of a proposed delay

{August 15th, 2017} by Greg Iacurci

Indexed and variable annuities are the biggest winners of the Department of Labor’s recently telegraphed fiduciary rule delay. Sales of the products, especially indexed annuities, would arguably have been the most adversely impacted under the original timetable, which had the full regulation going into effect on Jan. 1, 2018. Click HERE to view the full […]

9 New Annuity Issuer Earnings Highlights

{August 15th, 2017} by Allison Bell

Interest rates may be low, and sales rule uncertainty may be hurting distributors, but executives at the annuity issuers seem, generally, to be satisfied with the profitability of their annuity units. Executives have been talking about the performance of the annuity units during conference calls with securities analysts, while discussing earnings reports for the second […]

Jackson Reports First Half 2017 Financial Results

{August 15th, 2017} by Jackson National Life Insurance Company

LANSING, Mich.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Jackson National Life Insurance Company®1 (Jackson®) generated a record $1.4 billion in IFRS pre-tax operating income during the first half of 2017, an increase of 7 percent over the first half of 2016. Jackson, an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of the United Kingdom’s Prudential plc (NYSE: PUK), also recorded sales and deposits of $12.1 […]

DOL fiduciary rule rocks the shelves

{August 15th, 2017} by Allison Bell

The U.S. Department of Labor may be trying to postpone implementation of its own fiduciary rule standards, but insurers continue to add annuity products designed for a world in which advisor fees may eventually crowd out insurance agent commissions. Brighthouse Financial Inc. contributed to the flow of new fee-based [buffer] annuity products this week. Brighthouse introduced the Brighthouse […]

Brighthouse Financial Expands and Enhances Shield Portfolio with Launch of Streamlined Index-Linked Annuities

{August 15th, 2017} by Brighthouse

Charlotte, NC, August 14, 2017 Brighthouse Financial (Nasdaq: BHF), a major provider of annuity and life insurance solutions in the United States, announced today updates to its flagship Shield annuity family with the availability of the Brighthouse Shield Level SelectSM 3-Year and 6-Year Annuities and the Brighthouse Shield Level SelectSM Access Annuity. The portfolio expansion, which reflects […]

Long DOL Rule Delay Hints at Revisions: Lawyers

{August 15th, 2017} by N/A

The Department of Labor’s further 18-month delay in enforcing major components of its fiduciary rule hints that the agency is planning substantial changes to the regulation, industry lawyers say. On Wednesday the DOL filed a notice of the pending delay in a lawsuit it is fighting brought by Thrivent Financial. Earlier that day, the agency filed proposed […]

John Hancock IPO Talk Is Just Speculation: Manulife CFO

{August 15th, 2017} by N/A

Talk of Canada’s Manulife Financial spinning off its U.S. business John Hancock is just that — talk, Manulife’s CFO tells Reuters. Analysts and the media have said that under the firm’s incoming CEO Roy Gori, Manulife could unload its U.S. assets to focus on Asia, where Gori “has deep roots,” Toronto-based Business News Network wrote on its website last week. Gori takes over […]

Financial Anxiety Is The New Diet Anxiety

{August 15th, 2017} by Emily Zulz

Financial anxiety is the new diet anxiety, according to millennial advisor Chantel Bonneau. Some people will try every new diet trend, rather than work on finding a diet that is sustainable long term. The same came be true with finances. “I do think it’s all about building a financial lifestyle that you can exist in long term […]

Sammons Unit Debuts IUL Product for Baby Boomers

{August 15th, 2017} by Warren S. Hersch

Angling for a share of the estimated $30 trillion that baby boomers will be transferring to heirs over the next decade, a Sammons company has released an indexed universal life product offering a tax-efficient way to establish a legacy for heirs. The product also seeks to provide liquidity and living benefits for unexpected needs in retirement. The […]

Jackson Books ‘Record’ Profits in Year’s First Half

{August 15th, 2017} by Greg Shulas

Jackson National reaped record profits for the year’s first half, compared to previous reporting periods, and also registered a record in assets under management. That’s according to a mid-year update issued by the Lansing, Mich.-based life insurer. In 2017’s opening six months, Jackson booked $1.4 billion in IFRS pre-tax operating income, an uptick of 7% compared […]

Insurance Premium Volume in U.S. Grows 4 Percent in 2016

{August 15th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

Overall insurance industry premiums in all lines rose 4 percent to $2.2 trillion in 2016 over 2015, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners reported. Of the $2.2 trillion in premiums, $914 billion went to health, $665 billion to life and annuity, $576 billion to property-casualty, $13 billion to title insurance, $2.5 billion to risk retention […]

Insurance Execs: June 9 DOL Doomsday a Dud

{August 15th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

June 9, the dreaded implementation date for the initial phase of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule came and went. Barely anyone blinked in the second quarterly earning calls over the past few weeks. “The June 9 applicability date for the Department of Labor fiduciary rule came and went without much fanfare,” John M. Matovina, […]

NAFA Pushes for Uniform Treatment of All Fixed Annuities in Response to DOL RFI

{August 15th, 2017} by NAFA

Comment Letter Homes in on Specific Problem of the Fiduciary Rule WASHINGTON D.C. (August 9, 2017) In response to the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) request for information (RFI) issued July 6, NAFA, the National Association for Fixed Annuities, submitted a comment letter outlining recommended revisions to the fiduciary rule and its prohibited transaction exemptions. […]

Delay of fiduciary rule not a done deal

{August 15th, 2017} by Nick Thornton

The Labor Department has sent a proposal to the Office of Management and Budget to delay the January 1, 2018 implementation date for the full fiduciary rule by 18 months, to July 1, 2019. If approved, the delay would extend the current transition period for the rule and postpone the rule’s prohibited contract exemptions. On June 9 of this year, the rule’s impartial […]

For one compliance chief, uncertainty around fiduciary rule feels like Wild West

{August 15th, 2017} by Nick Thornton

Andrea McGrew could use some rest. The chief compliance officer for USA Financial, an Ada, Michigan-based broker-dealer and registered advisory supporting about 150 investment professionals across the country, says she’s had her share of restless nights overseeing the firm’s effort to comply with the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule. “It’s been a massive overhaul,” McGrew told BenefitsPRO. […]

Debunking Annuity Myths

{August 15th, 2017} by Ben Mattlin

Many clients—and no doubt a few advisors—are confused about annuities. Not surprising, perhaps, since there’s been such widespread product development in recent years, not to mention a degree of alleged misrepresentation by unscrupulous sales reps. To set the record straight, TIAA’s Timothy Walsh, a senior managing director based in Waltham, Mass., lays out some simple […]

Ohio Family Charged in $2.9 Million Life Insurance Fraud Scheme

{August 15th, 2017} by Best's News Service

COLUMBUS, Ohio – A federal grand jury has indicted three members of an Ohio family for participating in a $2.9 million life insurance fraud scheme, alleging they bought policies for a sick relative but hid that condition from the insurers, prosecutors said. A federal indictment charged Mitch G. Stevenson; his wife Patricia Stevenson; and their […]

Allstate Lawsuit Alleges Ameriprise Stole Trade Secrets, Customers By Poaching Employees

{August 15th, 2017} by Marie Suszynski

CHICAGO – Allstate has filed a lawsuit against Ameriprise alleging the company directed Allstate employees to download thousands of pages of confidential documents that included trade secrets and customer information to unlawfully solicited clients. In a complaint filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Allstate Insurance Co. and Allstate […]

Financial Elder Abuse Litigation Against Insurers

{August 12th, 2017} by Dawn B. Williams and Gail E. Jankowski

As the U.S. population ages, financial elder abuse litigation is proliferating. These claims no longer affect only nursing homes, heirs, or caregivers. Potential exposure has become a reality for any business that transacts with “elders,” including banks, investment funds and advisors, and insurance companies. Meritorious or not, financial elder abuse lawsuits can be highly volatile […]

How Well Does Accelerated Life Underwriting Really Work?

{August 11th, 2017} by Allison Bell

Actuaries want more information about what happens when life insurers sell coverage with some information about the applicants’ health, but without a full medical underwriting process. A group of state insurance regulators at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners is working with actuarial groups to get insurers to provide detailed information about the performance of their “accelerated […]

DOL Fiduciary Delay Would Be ‘Double-Edged Sword,’ Lawyer Says

{August 11th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

Opponents and supporters of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule were quick to react to Labor filing on Thursday with the Office of Management and Budget to delay by 18 months compliance with the rule’s more onerous prohibited transaction exemptions, with one ERISA attorney characterizing the move as “continued agony.” “We will be in limbo for another two years, […]

ACLI Draws Ire of Consumer Groups over Annuity Sales Standard

{August 11th, 2017} by Alex Padalka

More than a dozen consumer groups have slammed the American Council of Life Insurers’ proposal on managing conflicts of interest in annuity sales, InvestmentNews writes.  Click HERE to read the original story via Life Annuity Specialist.  In April, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners began a review of its suitability standard in regard to annuity sales ahead of the Department of […]

DOL to Propose Pushing Back Fiduciary Rule Another 18 Months

{August 10th, 2017} by Kristen Ricaurte Knebel

The Labor Department’s controversial fiduciary rule is likely going to see its most substantial delay to date. The agency said Aug. 9 in court documents that it sent the Office of Management and Budget a proposal to delay by 18 months several portions of the rule. Those portions, including the best interest contract exemption, were set to […]

Trump Administration Proposes Delay of Fiduciary Rule to July 1, 2019

{August 10th, 2017} by The National Law Review

The Trump administration proposed on August 9, 2017 further delays to the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule. The rule, adopted by the Obama administration in April 2016 and originally slated to be effective in April 2017, had already been partially delayed until January 1, 2018. In a notice filed in a lawsuit pending in federal […]

Fiduciary rule delayed until July 1, 2019: DOL

{August 10th, 2017} by Editorial Staff

Apparently responding to requests from financial industry lobbies like the Investment Company Institute for further delays in the enforcement of the Obama-era “fiduciary rule,” the Department of Labor filed this statement in Minnesota federal court Wednesday: “On August 9, 2017, the Department submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) proposed amendments to three […]

Trump Administration Seeks Further Delay in Labor Fiduciary Rule

{August 10th, 2017} by Elizabeth Dexheimer

The Trump administration is moving to further delay part of an Obama-era rule to require brokers who offer retirement advice to put their customers’ interests ahead of their own. The U.S. Department of Labor said in a court filing Wednesday that it has submitted to the Office of Management and Budget a proposal to postpone parts […]

The Single Most Important IUL Feature You Aren’t Looking For: BLOG

{August 10th, 2017} by Keith Schettino

Throughout my career, I have participated in countless conversations regarding the newest and shiniest indexed universal life. With an abundance of commendable products available today, insurance carriers need to continuously develop new consumer-focused solutions. To simultaneously keep pace with consumer desire and provide the value clients expect and deserve, innovation is vital. However, despite coming […]

NCOIL ANNOUNCES SECOND ANNUAL DC FLY-IN TO EDUCATE MEMBERS OF CONGRESS ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF STATE-BASED REGULATION

{August 10th, 2017} by NCOIL

  For Immediate Release DATE August 9, 2016 Contact: Paul Penna (732) 201-4133   NCOIL ANNOUNCES SECOND ANNUAL DC FLY-IN TO EDUCATE MEMBERS OF CONGRESS ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF STATE-BASED REGULATION   State Legislators to Meet with Senators, Representatives, Committee Staff and Member Staff to Further Education Process   Manasquan, NJ: – On September 19th, […]

North American Company Releases Legacy Optimizer IUL

{August 10th, 2017} by North American Company for Life and Health

CHICAGO, Aug. 09, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — North American Company for Life and Health Insurance® announced August 1, 2017 the release of the new Legacy Optimizer Indexed Universal Life insurance (IUL) product. Designed to provide a guaranteed death benefit in a single premium1, Legacy Optimizer touts desirable features like liquidity and living benefits.  “Legacy Optimizer is […]

Will DOL Gut Fiduciary Rule By Latest July 1, 2019 Extension?

{August 9th, 2017} by Ashlea Ebeling

The Department of Labor issued a notice of administrative action in one of the pending industry lawsuits against the Obama-era fiduciary rule: an extension of the transition period and delay of the applicability date until July 1, 2019 for three main exemptions to the rule. That’s pushing enforcement out another 18 months. It could mean […]

Danica Patrick To Serve As National Spokesperson for LIAM

{August 9th, 2017} by Life Insurance Awareness Month

Arlington, Va. – Aug 9, 2017 – For the second consecutive year, professional race car driver and athlete Danica Patrick is serving as the spokesperson for Life Insurance Awareness Month (LIAM), the annual campaign coordinated by the nonprofit organization Life Happens each September. The goal of the campaign is to increase awareness about the importance of […]

Brighthouse Seeks `Sleep-at-Night’ Calm in $79 Billion Portfolio

{August 9th, 2017} by Katherine Chiglinsky

Brighthouse Financial Inc., the annuity provider being spun off from MetLife Inc., is focusing on hedging risks in its $79 billion investment portfolio so that the company doesn’t have to worry about making abrupt shifts in its holdings, the chief executive officer said. Click HERE to view the original story via ThinkAdvisor. “It’s a sleep-at-night investment portfolio, so […]

CNO: 2Q Results Reveal Booming Annuity Sales

{August 9th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

CNO Financial Group’s fixed indexed annuity (FIA) with a lifetime income rider has squarely hit its mark with middle-market consumers — helping CNO deliver better-than-expected second quarter results, the company reported. CNO’s success with its single-premium Guaranteed Lifetime Income Annuity is also likely to blaze a new product trail around income protection and longevity for […]

The youth-led rebellion brewing in financial planning: Opinion

{August 9th, 2017} by Bob Veres

I’m a bit horrified by what I hear from younger advisors today. They say they want to take the next step in their firm’s evolution. They say they want to bring financial planning to the blue ocean of younger, not-yet-wealthy individuals who were, ironically, the same type of people that their firm’s founder worked with […]

Why NAIFA Needs to Update Its Bylaws

{August 9th, 2017} by NAIFA

The five-member executive committee of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors sent us this blog to explain how the committee sees the changes the committee recently proposed. Two years ago, at the NAIFA 2015 Performance + Purpose Conference, the NAIFA National Council was introduced to NAIFA’s new chief executive officer, Kevin Mayeux. From the main stage, Mayeux […]

Brighthouse Financial Goes Public

{August 9th, 2017} by Allison Bell

MetLife Inc., a New York-based company that has been selling individual life insurance in the United States since 1868, is now out of the U.S. individual life and annuity market. Brighthouse Financial Inc., a company that has inherited MetLife’s retail life and annuity operations, began trading today, under its own stock symbol, BHF, on the Nasdaq Stock Market. Click […]

Wall St annuity push challenges Allianz as MetLife, Axa retreat

{August 9th, 2017} by Bloomberg Munich

Bloomberg/Munich Allianz is sticking with annuities in the US even as rivals MetLife and Axa retreat. But Europe’s largest insurer may face a bigger challenge from Wall Street firms vying for a slice of the market. Blackstone Group and Apollo Global Management are among companies that have been betting on fixed annuities, an area where […]

Brighthouse to Expand Headcount by 200-Plus Amid Growth Push

{August 9th, 2017} by Greg Shulas

Brighthouse Financial has offered details on its future business strategy as an independent company now that it is officially spun out from MetLife. The Charlotte, N.C.-based firm plans to hire more than 200 employees in the future, the Charlotte Business Journal reports. Meanwhile, Brighthouse is offering insight into how it will use its $79 billion investment portfolio to […]

Labor Department to delay financial conflicts-of-interest rule

{August 9th, 2017} by Joseph Lawler

The Labor Department is planning to delay the enactment of a major Obama-era conflicts-of-interest investment rule for 18 months, the agency said in a court filing Wednesday. In a court filing, the agency said that it is planning to extend the effective date for the remaining provisions of the “fiduciary rule” until July of 2019. […]

Allianz Net Income Soars 83 Percent

{August 8th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

Second-quarter net income at Munich-based Allianz SE soared 83 percent to 2 billion euros from a year-ago, boosted by profits generated from the company’s life and asset management segments, the company reported Friday. Revenue rose 2 percent to 30 billion euros, the global life, health and property-casualty insurer also reported. A euro is worth $1.18 […]

DOL Releases New Round of Fiduciary Rule FAQs

{August 8th, 2017} by John Hilton

The Department of Labor (DOL) released a new round of FAQs Friday designed to help non-fiduciary advisors to plans navigate its complicated and controversial fiduciary rule. The six-page guidance addresses three questions aimed at resolving issues affecting defined contribution (DC) plans and retirement plan advisors. The department acknowledges the confusion created by a two-phase implementation period. On […]

Annuity Rules Should Apply to Investment-Type Life Products: Consumer Reps

{August 8th, 2017} by Allison Bell

Consumer group representatives say any new sales rules that apply to investment-type annuities should also apply to investment-type life insurance products. The group reps also say that any new life insurance and annuity sales rules should actually reduce the sellers’ potential conflicts of interest, not simply increase disclosure requirements. “The same standard of care — best interest of the consumer — […]

IRI Submits New Data Exposing Detrimental Impact of DOL Fiduciary Rule

{August 8th, 2017} by Insured Retirement Institute

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) submitted a response to the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Request for Information (RFI) showing the harmful effects already occurring under the partial implementation of the fiduciary rule. Through IRI’s latest comment letter, Department of Labor was presented with new evidence demonstrating the negative consequences the fiduciary rule is […]

Insurers, Trade Groups Seek Further Delay in Final DOL Rule Deadline

{August 8th, 2017} by Frank Klimko

WASHINGTON – Life insurers and trade representatives urged the U.S. Labor Department to delay and modify elements of the newly effective fiduciary rule before its final deadline in January 2018, preventing the rule from further upending the retirement advice industry. “The regulation — through a highly burdensome and paternalistic approach to regulation — effectively substitutes […]

Brighthouse Separates From MetLife, Debuts on Nasdaq Market

{August 8th, 2017} by Marie Suszynski

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Brighthouse Financial Inc. has completed its separation from MetLife Inc. and began trading on the Nasdaq Stock Market on Aug. 7. The spinoff created two independent, publicly traded companies. Brighthouse is trading on the Nasdaq under the symbol “BHF,” while MetLife will continue to trade on the New York Stock Exchange. Under […]

Fiduciary rule may not be fully implemented until 2019

{August 8th, 2017} by Charles Paikert

Full implementation of the fiduciary rule may be delayed until 2019, according to an expert in ERISA law. Although the current transition period for advisors to fully comply with the rule, which went into effect June 9, Bruce Ashton, an ERISA specialist and attorney for Drinker Biddle in Los Angeles, said he expects the Department […]

30 Under 30, Part 3: Young Life, Health and Annuity Stars

{August 8th, 2017} by Kristen Beckman and Allison Bell

Here’s our final batch of ThinkAdvisor Life Health 30 Under 30 award winners for 2017. These life, health and benefits sector professionals have survived the same economic ups and downs, and underlying societal changes, that have faced the other 2017 award winners, and they’ve survived another, additional challenge: the alphabet. The award winners we honored in our first two batches may have […]

DOL Fiduciary Rule Comments Unearth Deep Unease

{August 8th, 2017} by Murray Coleman

Heading into the final day to comment on the Department of Labor’s efforts to enforce its new fiduciary rule on retirement planning, more than 400 letters from a range of different industry players are flowing into the regulator’s coffers. But a few common themes are already becoming apparent, say legal experts and wealth management analysts surveyed […]

Voya Financial Reaps Rewards of Life-Annuity Reorg

{August 8th, 2017} by Warren S. Hersch

To boost earnings, a growing number of insurers are unifying their annuities and life insurance businesses. Among the spate of carriers releasing financial results this week, the benefits of such a reorganization is notably evident for Voya Financial. Commenting on the company’s second quarter results, Carolyn Johnson, Voya’s CEO of Annuities and Individual Life businesses, says the […]

DOL May Announce Fiduciary Rule Delay This Month, Attorneys Say

{August 8th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

Now that the comment periods have expired on the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule, industry groups say they “need certainty as soon as possible” about whether or not Labor will delay the Jan. 1 compliance date, and at least one attorney anticipates a quick delay. “I expect that we will hear something [regarding a delay] at […]

Roundup: Manulife Agent Sets Guinness Record for Sales Tenure

{August 8th, 2017} by Jay Cooper

No one can say Sun Yung Tsu isn’t a loyal employee. After a 62-plus year career as a life insurance sales agent at Manulife, Sun has been awarded a Guinness World Records title as “the longest career as a corporate salesperson.”  Click HERE to view the original story via Life Annuity Specialist. And the record could continue to […]

AM Best Affirms Ratings of Knighthead Annuity

{August 8th, 2017} by Knighthead Annuity & Life Assurance Company

GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands , Aug. 03, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Knighthead Annuity & Life Assurance Company™ announced today that A.M. Best, the world’s oldest and most authoritative insurance rating and information source, affirmed its financial strength rating of B++ (Good) and issuer credit rating of bbb+ (Good).  The outlook for both ratings remains stable. […]

DOL Releases New Fiduciary FAQ

{August 8th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

ERISA attorneys are applauding the Department of Labor’s just-released FAQ guidance on its fiduciary rule. “We are generally pleased,” said Steve Saxon, partner at Groom Law Group. “The 408(b)(2) guidance just makes good sense because the DOL was already providing similar relief under the Transition Rule.” Click HERE to view the original story via ThinkAdvisor. […]

Christopher Conroy Joins North American Company® as Vice President Annuity Sales

{August 8th, 2017} by North American Company for Life and Health

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa, Aug. 04, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — North American Company for Life and Health Insurance® is pleased to announce the recent hiring of Christopher Conroy as vice president, annuity sales. Conroy will establish the sales direction and initiatives for North American Annuities, part of Sammons Independent Annuity Distribution, a division of Sammons® Financial […]

Happy 100th Birthday! There Goes Your Life Insurance

{August 8th, 2017} by Leslie Scism

When Gary Lebbin turns 100 years old in September, hanging over any celebration will be one very costly fact: His life insurer aims to cancel two policies totaling $3.2 million in death benefits. The Lebbin family has run up against a provision that exists in many life-insurance policies. Policies have expiration dates, and the one […]

Life Insurance Can Be a Great Retirement Planning Tool

{August 8th, 2017} by April Caudill

Many advisors don’t see an obvious connection between life insurance and retirement planning. Click HERE to view the original story via ThinkAdvisor. After all, life insurance is best known for protecting your client’s family, particularly during their working years when children are younger and financially dependent. The truth is life insurance can offer much more than death […]

American Equity Reports Second Quarter 2017 Results

{August 8th, 2017} by American Equity Investment Life Holding Company

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa–(BUSINESS WIRE)–American Equity Investment Life Holding Company (NYSE: AEL), a leading issuer of fixed index annuities, today reported second quarter 2017 net income of $26.9 million, or $0.30 per diluted common share, compared to net income of $14.7 million, or $0.18 per diluted common share, for second quarter 2016. Non-GAAP operating income1 for […]

Fiduciary rule put to test in conservative 5th Circuit

{August 8th, 2017} by Nick Thornton

A three-judge panel in the 5thCircuit Court of Appeals, considered among the most conservative of the federal circuits, heard oral arguments Monday in the most wide-ranging of four lawsuits seeking to vacate the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule. Earlier this year, the District Court for the Northern District of Texas upheld the fiduciary rule, dismissing a suit […]

Industry groups opposing DOL fiduciary rule maximize spending on author of bill to kill measure

{August 8th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

Several financial industry trade associations that oppose the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule have maximized their campaign spending on the author of legislation that would kill the rule. In the first half of year, the Financial Services Institute, the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, the Investment Company Institute and the National Association of Insurance and […]

Consumer and insurance groups disagree on advice standard for annuity sales ​

{August 8th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

An effort by state insurance regulators to raise investment-advice standards for annuity sales appears to be driving a wedge between consumer organizations and a life insurance trade association. In light of the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners established a working group in April to review its suitability standard for annuity sales. In advance […]

AXA Announces Alternate Loan Option on BrightLife® Grow

{August 8th, 2017} by AXA US

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–AXA US, a leader in providing financial security and retirement products, announced today that an Alternate Loan option1 will now be included with all new issues of its BrightLife® Grow accumulation Indexed Universal Life policy. BrightLife® Grow provides the potential for tax-deferred growth while being able to access the policy’s cash surrender value tax-free through loans […]

Roundup: National Western Taps Ex-Voya Marketer to Boost Life Sales

{August 8th, 2017} by Greg Shulas

National Western Life Insurance has hired a former Voya distribution strategist as the new chief marketing officer within its domestic insurance unit. R. Bruce Wallace will start this month in this senior VP-level role following previous stints as head of strategic distribution at Voya Financial, and managing general agent of the Eastern U.S. at Nationwide Financial, a press release states. […]

Skip Schweiss: The Real Reason the Industry Is Fighting the DOL Fiduciary Rule

{August 8th, 2017} by Jane Wollman Rusoff

Allowing investors to pursue class actions against advisors, broker-dealers and insurance companies under the Labor Department’s controversial fiduciary standard rule is almost certainly the loudest objection voiced by its foes in the industry. Consequently, that critical issue warrants close attention, Skip Schweiss, managing director of advisor advocacy and industry affairs at TD Ameritrade Institutional, tells […]

Great American Life and Brookstone Capital Management Partner to Offer Fee-Based Annuity

{August 8th, 2017} by Great American Life Insurance Company

CINCINNATI–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Great American Life Insurance Company® is pleased to announce that its fee-based annuity is now available through Brookstone Capital Management (BCM). Adding a fixed-indexed annuity to its platform allows BCM’s advisors to help clients further diversify their portfolios and manage risk. BCM joins the list of nearly 50 Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs) positioned to sell […]

Be a blessing

{August 8th, 2017} by Wink RockStars

Brandon Jons was diagnosed with leukemia September 1989. He relapsed two years later and passed away on November 5th, 1991 at the age of five.   “So many folks rallied to help us when he [Brandon] had leukemia. We even got adopted by a church group that made sure we had Christmas. And we had a benefit […]

Jackson National Parent Rumored to Step Further from Annuities

{August 8th, 2017} by Jay Cooper

Prudential plc, the parent company of Jackson National Life, may be shopping its European-focused annuities business. So reports The Times of London. While such a move would seem to signal the parent company is de-emphasizing annuities, the company has not announced any plans concerning Jackson National. Prudential recently searched for investment bankers to advise it on the […]

Sr. Financial Analyst – FP&A

{August 8th, 2017} by Fidelity & Guaranty Life

Job description Summary This position is responsible for compiling analysis to support underlying Statutory and GAAP results and preparing presentation materials for communicating results to senior management and outside stakeholders. The FP&A team is responsible for delivering value-added business analysis and meaningful financial metrics in support of enterprise-wide decision-making. This team will have a comprehensive […]

Brighthouse Finishes Down on First Trading Day

{August 7th, 2017} by Greg Shulas

Brighthouse Financial debuted on the Nasdaq exchange Monday, finishing the day down 4.41% from its pre-opening share price of $64.57. The market debut kicked off the retail annuity provider’s first full trading day as an independent company from MetLife.  Click HERE to view the original story via Life Annuity Specialist.  Charlotte, N.C.-based Brighthouse (Nasdaq: BHF) closed at $61.72, below […]

CNO Reports Higher Annuity Sales

{August 2nd, 2017} by Allison Bell

CNO Financial Services Group Inc. is reporting higher annuity sales, but lower Medicare supplement and long-term care insurance sales, for the second quarter. The Carmel, Indiana-based company posted the following first-year collected premium results for its Bankers Life unit: Annuities: Sales increased to $262 million, from $205 million. Medicare supplement insurance: Sales fell to $18 million, […]

American National Insurance Posts 2Q Profit

{August 2nd, 2017} by Associated Press

GALVESTON, Texas (AP) _ American National Insurance Co. (ANAT) on Monday reported second-quarter earnings of $36 million. The Galveston, Texas-based company said it had net income of $1.33 per share. Earnings, adjusted for investment gains, came to 79 cents per share. The insurance company posted revenue of $834.1 million in the period. American National Insurance […]

DOL Rule Opponents Have Good Day in Appeals Court

{August 2nd, 2017} by John Hilton

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals lived up to its reputation for being tough on government regulators Monday during a hearing on the controversial Department of Labor fiduciary rule. The 68-minute hearing was marked by several spirited clashes between government attorney Michael Shih and Judge Edith H. Jones over the DOL’s authority to regulate individual […]

Top 75 North American Public Insurers

{August 1st, 2017} by AM Best

Best’s Review presents its annual ranking of the top 75 North American public insurers, ranked by 2016 assets. http://bit.ly/2vG8SPJ

Voya Financial Announces Second-Quarter 2017 Results

{August 1st, 2017} by Voya

NEW YORK, Aug. 1, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA) today announced financial results for the second quarter of 2017. 2Q 2017 net income available to common shareholders of $0.89 per diluted share1, which reflects: A loss of $0.10 per diluted share, after-tax2, in the Closed Block Variable Annuity (CBVA) segment due to […]

DOL Official: Help Me Improve Fiduciary Rule

{August 1st, 2017} by John Hilton

The best way the insurance industry can affect change on the Department of Labor fiduciary rule is by providing current data to regulators, a top department official said today. Timothy Hauser, deputy assistant secretary for program operations, is considered the man behind the fiduciary rule. But that was during the Obama administration — the rule […]

SEC Official Urges Labor Department to Reconsider ‘Misguided’ Fiduciary Rule

{August 1st, 2017} by Thomas Harman

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is urging the U.S. Department of Labor to reconsider its fiduciary rule that broadly expanded new regulations to advisers and brokers who had not been covered. Commissioner Michael Piwowar, in a recent comment letter to the DOL, said the rule dismisses desired results for conflict of interest […]

Principal Sees Strong Life Sales and Variable Annuity Asset Growth

{August 1st, 2017} by Allison Bell

Principal Financial Group Inc. is using the terms “life insurance” and “specialty benefits” a lot more often in connection with earnings this quarter than it’s using the word “annuities.” The Des Moines, Iowa-based company, which is now a major global money manager but has deep roots in the life insurance industry, is reporting $315 million in […]

30 Under 30, Part 2: Young Life, Health and Annuity Stars

{August 1st, 2017} by Kristen Beckman and Allison Bell

Here’s the second section of a formidable list: the ThinkAdvisor Life Health 30 Under 30 award winners for 2017. We published the first batch of 10 names last week. The third and final list will come out early next week. All of the people on the list are young life, health and benefits sales and marketing professionals […]

Alaina Gullet selected as NAFA’s Membership and Development Manager

{August 1st, 2017} by NAFA

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE         Contact: Chip Anderson, Executive Director Direct 414.332.9306, ext. 1 chip@nafa.com    Alaina Gullet selected as NAFA’s Membership and Development Manager  WASHINGTON (Aug. 1, 2017) — NAFA, the National Association for Fixed Annuities, is pleased to announce and welcome Alaina Gullett as its membership and development manager effective August 1. This […]

Who Should Pay More for Insurance: Smokers or ‘Significantly Overweight’?

{August 1st, 2017} by Suzanne Tullo

Americans may prefer to see health insurance rates increase for smokers than for people who are significantly overweight. Justin McCarthy, an analyst at Washington-based Gallup Inc., has published data supporting that conclusion in a summary of results from a new consumer consumption habits survey. Gallup based the results on telephone interviews with 1,021 adults in all 50 U.S. […]

Judge Hammers DOL on Fiduciary Rule’s BICE

{August 1st, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

Republican circuit court Judge Edith Jones on Monday “relentlessly peppered” the Department of Labor on what she viewed as trouble spots in its fiduciary rule’s controversial best interest contract exemption during oral arguments in the case brought by nine plaintiffs against the rule, according to Miller & Chevalier attorney Erin Sweeney. Jones, a Reagan appointee, […]

Why Advisors Need Financial Advisors

{August 1st, 2017} by Angie Herbers

I got a call the other day from an owner-advisor who wanted me to work with him. He told me a story about his mother (now deceased) who was a doctor and had selflessly helped many people during her life, including taking in foster children over the years. She’d had little concern for her own […]

Middle-Income Americans Desperately Need Financial Advice: Financial Finesse

{August 1st, 2017} by Jane Wollman Rusoff

Heated dissention over tax cuts and health care for Americans are center-stage. But backstage, a relevant, worrisome and largely overlooked issue lingers: The average Financial Wellness Score for U.S. employees is a dismayingly low 5.4 on a scale of 1 to 10. Indeed, only about 6% of the overall workforce can be considered financially secure, […]

SEC Approves FINRA Rule to Streamline Exams

{August 1st, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

The Securities and Exchange Commission recently approved a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority rule change to streamline competency exams that the self-regulatory organization’s regulation chief has said will also facilitate opportunities for professionals seeking to enter or re-enter the securities industry. The rule change, approved on July 7, restructures FINRA’s representative-level qualification exams, creates general knowledge and […]

Former Barclays CEO close to deal to buy Hartford unit, say sources: Reuters

{August 1st, 2017} by Reuters News

Atlas Merchant Capital LLC, the investment firm led by former Barclays Plc Chief Executive Officer Bob Diamond, is in advanced talks to acquire a Hartford Financial Services Group Inc annuity run-off business for between $3 billion and $3.5 billion, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday. Divesting the unit, dubbed Talcott Resolution, would help Hartford recycle capital, allowing it to […]

Brighthouse Hints at Life Insurance Revamp, Touts Annuity Sales

{August 1st, 2017} by Jamie Johnson

New life insurance products could be on the way at Brighthouse Financial, as the company prepares for a revamp of its life business. A new SEC filing this week is scant on details, but hints at changes ahead. The 8-K filing also shares details on the company’s Shield Level Selector SM Annuity sales, which continue to […]

AmeriLife® Invites Insurance Agents and Advisors to Test Drive Its Risk Assessment and Compliance Tool Free of Charge

{August 1st, 2017} by AmeriLife

CLEARWATER, Fla.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–With the first phase of the Department of Labor Fiduciary Rule now in effect, AmeriLife is offering its new financial needs and risk assessment tool, the AmeriLyzerSM, to insurance agents and advisors free of charge until January 1, 2018. AmeriLife, a national leader in the distribution of annuity, life and health insurance products, […]

National Western Life Announces Appointment of Wallace as Chief Marketing Officer

{August 1st, 2017} by National Western Life Insurance Company

AUSTIN, Texas, July 31, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — National Western Life Insurance Company announced today the appointment of R. Bruce Wallace to the position of Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of its Domestic Insurance operations after an extensive search. “It was worth the wait to fill the position,” said Kitty Nelson, National Western Life’s President and Chief Operating Officer.  […]

Former Principal Adviser, charged in abduction, is sued by his parents

{August 1st, 2017} by Nathan Blake

MORRISON, Ill. — The parents of a man accused of kidnapping an Erie, Illinois, couple earlier this year are suing him for money they say he stole while he was their financial investor. Investigators say that on Feb. 7, Chad C. Schipper, 40, of Geneseo, Illinois, kidnapped Larry and Constance VanOosten at gunpoint from their […]

Advice for Annuity Businesses Adjusting to DOL Rule: Blog

{July 31st, 2017} by Vanessa Peng

By now, everyone in the financial services industry knows about the U.S. Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule and is figuring out how to adjust and comply with the new regulations. Annuity agents and advisors have a tough road ahead of them. Here’s some advice from Shawn Sparks, the author of “The Advisor Breakthrough, Your Step-By-Step […]

The US is losing ground when it comes to retirement security

{July 31st, 2017} by Jessica Dickler

The US is losing ground when it comes to retirement security  Wednesday, 19 Jul 2017 | 10:40 AM ET | 00:48 All your retirement dreams can come true, just maybe not in the U.S. Among the leading nations for retirement security, the United States didn’t even crack the top 15, according to the 2017 Global Retirement […]

Fintech sales take off after DOL fiduciary rule’s partial implementation

{July 31st, 2017} by Liz Skinner

Adviser demand for a technological answer to meeting new requirements of the DOL fiduciary rule has jumped in the three weeks since part of the retirement advice regulation was implemented. Technology providers said interest in their fiduciary fintech had cooled following the election of President Donald J. Trump, who some speculated would scrap the best […]

Female Financial Advisors Find Their Way

{July 28th, 2017} by Lou Carlozo

U.S. Census Bureau figures for 2016 put the percentage of women slightly ahead of men, 51 to 49 percent. But the numbers certainly don’t break down like that in the working world. From recording studio engineers to Capitol Hill, some fields are overwhelming male – and not necessarily for the better. The male makeup of Congress? […]

CNO Financial Group Inc.: CNO Financial Group Reports Second Quarter 2017 Results

{July 28th, 2017} by CNO Financial Group

CARMEL, Ind., July 26, 2017/PRNewswire / — CNO Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE: CNO) today announced net income for the second quarter of 2017 of $83.4 million, or 48 cents per diluted share, compared to $59.9 million, or 33 cents per diluted share, in the second quarter of 2016. CNO also announced second quarter of 2017 net operating income (1) of $78.6 million, […]

DOL Rule Spurs Innovation, Alliances Among Carriers

{July 28th, 2017} by Warren S. Hersch

The Department of Labor fiduciary rule is having wide-ranging impacts on life-annuity carriers. The most notable effects include a dampening of otherwise positive sales trends, the advent of new products and portals, as well as corporate alliances and acquisitions that carriers are spearheading to secure a competitive advantage. The source of these conclusions: Scott Hawkins, VP of insurance […]

Ameriprise Sees Stability in Annuity Block

{July 28th, 2017} by Allison Bell

Executives at Ameriprise Financial Inc.say they believe their annuity operation is recovering from the affects of uncertainty about the U.S. Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule. James Cracchiolo, the Minneapolis-based financial services company’s chief executive officer, said Wednesday that annuity sales fell off earlier because of financial advisors’ questions about how they ought to proceed. “Now, some of that is starting […]

Galvin Slams SEC’s Piwowar Over Anti-Fiduciary Rule Comments

{July 28th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

Massachusetts’ top securities regulator, Commonwealth Secretary William Galvin, is slamming SEC Commissioner Michael Piwowar’s recent comments opposing the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule and is urging Labor to “continue to staunchly defend” the rule. In this Friday letter to Labor, Galvin stated that “the horrific financial abuses associated with conflicted advice in the area of retirement rollovers […]

Many Retirement-Age Women Lack Financial Literacy: American College

{July 27th, 2017} by Michael S. Fischer

A large cohort of retirement-age American women lack financial literacy, according to The American College of Financial Services’ latest RICP retirement income literacy survey. Only 18% of women could pass a basic quiz on how to make their savings last in retirement, compared with 35% of retirement-age men, yet a majority of women were still extremely confident […]

CFP Board’s Fiduciary Standard Provides ‘More Freedom’ Than DOL’s

{July 27th, 2017} by Emily Zulz

The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards has received more than 1,000 comments on the proposed revisions to its Standards of Professional Conduct that were announced in mid-June. On Tuesday morning, the CFP Board held a public forum in New York City to review and discuss its proposal. There are five remaining public forums throughout the United […]

NAIFA May Reduce Reliance on Local Chapters

{July 27th, 2017} by Suzanne Tullo

The National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors might move to reduce its reliance on formal local chapters, and make other organizational changes, in September, at its annual conference in Orlando. Click HERE to view the original story via ThinkAdvisor. The NAIFA board has included organizational change provisions in a package of proposed bylaw changes based […]

Value of Advisors Underscored by Annuity Program Pilot

{July 27th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

Early responses to a new direct-to-consumer (D2C) annuity pilot program in Arizona reveal that buyers want to talk to someone – or something – before committing to a long-term retirement investment. The early findings in Nationwide’s Guarantees Retirement Income program raise new questions for insurance companies serious about expanding through the growing D2C channel to […]

Insurance could become obsolete – PwC

{July 27th, 2017} by Ryan Smith

Could technology render the insurance industry as we know it obsolete? Insurtech like peer-to-peer coverage, artificial intelligence and on-demand insurance could make the industry unrecognisable in years to come, according to Nick Spooner, PwC digital experience centre lead partner. “For hundreds of years, the insurance industry has been inert,” Spooner said, writing in a blog […]

5 Huge Problems Educators Face With Retirement Planning & How IUL May Help: BLOG

{July 27th, 2017} by Blake Neben

Let’s face it, the second quarter is gone and you’re probably thinking to yourself “what can I do to generate some more profitable sales opportunities for myself this year and not repeat the same level of production from last year. Does that sound right? If you’re like most of the insurance agents and financial planners […]

How life insurers can sell you a policy without a doctor’s visit

{July 27th, 2017} by Ed Leefeldt

We’ve all seen the advertisements for life insurance policies with “no medical exam necessary” on TV and the internet. Just answer a few basic questions online, provide access to your credit report and other personal information, and – bingo – you’ve bought yourself a $500,000 life insurance policy. Such “no muss, no fuss” transactions are […]

LAMOND JOINS WINK AS VARIABLE ANNUITY PRODUCT DIRECTOR

{July 25th, 2017} by Press Release

 — FOR IMMEDIATE DISTRIBUTION — NEWS RELEASE   LAMOND JOINS WINK AS VARIABLE ANNUITY PRODUCT DIRECTOR Wink, Inc.’s Latest Initiative Aids Them in Crushing the Competition Des Moines, Iowa. July 25, 2017– Peter Lamond has been named Variable Annuity Product Director for Wink, Inc. where he is responsible for introducing and managing Variable Annuities (VAs) on […]

Prudential to Realign Its U.S. Businesses

{July 25th, 2017} by Allison Bell

Prudential Financial Inc. plans to put its U.S. individual life, annuity and investment advisory operations in one individual solutions unit, under the leadership of Lori Fouché. Fouché has been the chief executive officer of the Prudential Group Insurance unit. She began working for Prudential in 2013. Before that, she was president of Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company. She has a […]

IUL Rate Projections Drop Slightly In Illustrations

{July 25th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

Maximum illustrated rates allowed for the most popular investment choice with an indexed universal life (IUL) policy dropped last year following the implementation of new actuarial guidelines in 2015 and early 2016, a new survey by Milliman has found. During the first nine months of last year post-guideline illustrated rates ranged from 5.02 percent to […]

DOL fiduciary rule opponents want to push implementation back until 2019

{July 25th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

Critics of the DOL fiduciary rule are urging the Labor Department to delay its implementation until January 2019 — or possibly longer. “To provide needed certainty, reduce harm to investors and limit unnecessary ‘sunk’ costs associated with implementing requirements that the department ultimately eliminates or modifies, the department should immediately — by August 15, 2017 […]

U.S. life and health insurance industry direct premiums expect decline for the first time in four years

{July 25th, 2017} by S&P Global Market Intelligence

NEW YORK, July 25, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — U.S. life and health insurance industry direct premiums and considerations will decline for the first time in four years in 2017 as regulatory uncertainty stymies sales of certain types of individual annuities, a new S&P Global Market Intelligence report projects. The 2017 U.S. Life and Health Insurance Market Report, which is the first […]

Transamerica’s Cancelation of 99-Year-Old’s Policy Draws National Attention

{July 25th, 2017} by Jay Cooper

When Gary Lebbin turns 100 this September, Transamerica could have a PR problem. When he hits the landmark birthday, a unit of the company that issued his life insurance plans to cancel two of Lebbin’s policies totaling $3.2 million in death benefits, The Wall Street Journal reports. Other life insurers may face similar tough decisions, as a growing number of […]

Critics of DOL Fiduciary Rule Push for Long Delays

{July 25th, 2017} by Melanie Waddell

Despite industry trade groups’ insistence that the Department of Labor delay the implementation date of its fiduciary rule for years, ERISA attorneys continue to recommend that advisors and broker-dealers push ahead in their compliance steps.   Click HERE to view the original story via ThinkAdvisor. The first deadline under a two-part request for information issued […]

Fiduciary rule final stand: ‘Please rethink this’

{July 25th, 2017} by Andrew Welsch

The future of the fiduciary rule is up for grabs, again, and clients, advisers and firms are jumping in to make their voices heard at a crucial moment. Via a public commentary board, the Department of Labor is hearing feedback on whether it should make changes to the fiduciary rule and delay the regulation’s second stage […]

Analysts: DOL Rule Could Be Pushed Out to 2020

{July 25th, 2017} by John Hilton

One possible scenario has the Department of Labor delaying the phase two effective date of its fiduciary rule by one year, and giving financial services a year beyond that to comply. That would push the effective date from Jan. 1, 2018 to Jan. 1, 2020. Bradford P. Campbell, counsel at Drinker Biddle & Reath, agreed […]

Is It Time For Your Safety-Seeking Clients To Take Another Look At Fixed Annuities?

{July 25th, 2017} by Chris Conklin

One of the most important conversations you’ll have about managing a client’s finances  is what portion of their money should be used for “risky” investments to maximize growth potential and what portion should be kept “safe” to ensure preservation of capital when the markets get turbulent. This foundational conversation is about finding the right balance, […]

Analyst Sees ‘Great Restructuring’ of Life Industry

{July 25th, 2017} by Allison Bell

Sean Dargan, a Wells Fargo & Co. securities analyst, says European insurers are willing to give buyers reasonable prices for blocks of U.S. annuity business. The insurers have run-off blocks that could be “transacted at below book value,” Dargan writes in a preview of the upcoming earning season. “We expect to see more deals in particular within the […]

30 Under 30, Part 1: Young Life, Health and Annuity Stars

{July 25th, 2017} by Kristen Beckman and Allison Bell

Here’s a three-part list to make you think: the ThinkAdvisor Life Health 30 Under 30 award winners for 2017. This is a look at young life, health and benefits professionals who have already started to make a mark. We collected nominations in January and have been reviewing and processing the entries ever since. Click HERE to view […]

SYMETRA INTRODUCES NEW FEE-BASED FIXED INDEXED ANNUITIES—SYMETRA ADVISORY EDGE AND SYMETRA ADVISORY INCOME EDGE

{July 25th, 2017} by Symetra

Symetra Life Insurance Company, a leading fixed annuity provider, has introduced two new fixed indexed annuities built for fee-based planning—Symetra Advisory Edge and Symetra Advisory Income Edge. Both annuities provide retirement customers with asset protection and interest crediting opportunities through multiple index options, including the JPMorgan ETF Efficiente® 5 Index. “The addition of Advisory Edge and Advisory Income […]

WealthVest and Thrivent Independent Kick Off Partnership

{July 25th, 2017} by WealthVest

BOZEMAN, MONTANA (PRWEB) JULY 24, 2017 Thrivent Independent, a division of Thrivent Financial, and WealthVest are working together to help Christians be wise with money. Thrivent Independent has entrusted WealthVest with the distribution of its Multi-Year Guarantee Annuity: Growth You Can Count On, soon to be available in banks and broker-dealers for clients seeking safety and […]

Why Do the Pundits Hate Annuity Commissions?

{July 25th, 2017} by Chuck Ritzke

In this video installment, we are addressing the pundits’ primary punching bag — one seemingly more evil than tyrannical dictators, terrorists, or 1950s movie creatures from out of the lagoon. That is, of course, annuity commissions. Actually, we are told, it is not just annuity commissions that are evil, but all forms of insurance product commissions. And […]

Insurance and improv don’t go together – try telling that to this former agent

{July 25th, 2017} by Sam Boyer

When it comes to things that don’t naturally mix, insurance and improv comedy would have to be right up there with oil and water. But for one Zurich business development leader in Chicago, the two activities actually complement each other nicely. Marissa Jennings, who recently completed an acting course at the famed Second City in Chicago and […]

Symetra Introduces New Fee-based Fixed Indexed Annuities—Symetra Advisory Edge and Symetra Advisory Income Edge

{July 24th, 2017} by Symetra Life Insurance Company

BELLEVUE, Wash.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Symetra Life Insurance Company, a leading fixed annuity provider, has introduced two new fixed indexed annuities built for fee-based planning—Symetra Advisory Edge and Symetra Advisory Income Edge. Both annuities provide retirement customers with asset protection and interest crediting opportunities through multiple index options, including the JPMorgan ETF Efficiente® 5 Index. “The addition of Advisory Edge and […]

New AIG CEO Wants to Grow the Insurer Again

{July 24th, 2017} by Jay Cooper

New AIG CEO Brian Duperreault has a clear vision for AIG’s future. In a word: growth. The new leader of one of the world’s largest insurers shared details on his past, and AIG’s future, with The Wall Street Journal in his first extensive interview since accepting the job in May.  Click HERE to view the original story via Life Annuity Specialist.  […]

44% of Americans Don’t Know When the Fed Last Raised Rates: WalletHub

{July 24th, 2017} by Emily Zulz

With two 2017 rate hikes on the books and another expected by the end of the year, how much does the American public know about Federal Reserve policy? According to a new survey from WalletHub, 44% of Americans don’t know when the Fed last raised rates. (In June, the Federal Reserve raised rates 25 basis points to […]

Annexus Continues to Expand Capital Markets and Index Solutions Expertise

{July 24th, 2017} by Annexus

Strategic Addition of New SVP to Support Custom Index Design July 24, 2017 06:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Annexus, a Scottsdale, Ariz.-based designer of fixed indexed annuities, life insurance and other index-based wealth management products, announced the addition of Tom Haines as Senior Vice President of Capital Markets and Index Solutions. Mr. Haines, […]

Producers Across the Country Are Saving Valuable Selling Time

{July 24th, 2017} by Ann Arbor Annuity Exchange

Financial service professionals across the country are learning what it means to “Step Into the Light,” as Ann Arbor Annuity Exchange, in conjunction with Insurance Technologies, recently launched a new electronic application submittal system that is available to all producers contracted with Ann Arbor Annuity Exchange through their website portal. FireLight® is an electronic application system […]

A.M. Best Affirms Credit Ratings of Great-West Lifeco, Inc. and Its Subsidiaries

{July 21st, 2017} by Best's News Service

Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating of A+ (Superior) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Ratings (Long-Term ICR) of “aa” of The Great-West Life Assurance Company (Winnipeg, Manitoba) and its affiliates, London Life Insurance Company (London, Ontario), The Canada Life Assurance Company (CLAC) (Toronto, Ontario), Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company (GWL&A) (Greenwood Village, CO) and Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company of […]

Impact of DOL Fiduciary Rule on Broker-Dealers: Recommending Annuities to IRA Investors

{July 21st, 2017} by Fred Reish, Bruce L. Ashton, Joshua J. Waldbeser

The focus of this alert is the prohibited transaction exemptions (PTEs) — PTE 84-24 and the Best Interest Contract Exemption (BICE) — that are available to broker-dealers when their registered representatives recommend annuities to IRA investors. The purpose is to address the factors that firms may want to consider in deciding which exemption to use […]

House Makes Two More Whacks to DOL Rule

{July 21st, 2017} by Joe Morris

A House of Representatives panel has approved legislation to rescind the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule, while the House Appropriations Committee separately adopted a funding bill that would prohibit enforcement of the rule, reports Ignites. The House Education and Workforce Committee voted 23-to-17 along party lines Wednesday in favor of the Affordable Retirement Advice for […]

Ominous Signs Loom for Life Insurance Sales

{July 21st, 2017} by Jay Cooper

The sales environment for the life insurance industry could remain challenging, a leading indicator of industry wide sales shows. The MIB Life Index fell again in June and for the year-to-date period is down -3.2% compared to the first six months of 2016. The MIB Life Index score is determined by the number of searches […]

Prudential Financial Reorganizes US Businesses Into Three Groups

{July 21st, 2017} by Best's News Service

NEWARK, N.J. – Prudential Financial Inc. said it will implement a new structure comprising three main groups for its U.S. businesses in an effort to extend customer reach as it seeks what it calls “pathways to new markets.” The new structure will become effective in the fourth quarter of 2017, Prudential said. “Our strategy, enabled […]

A.M. Best Affirms Credit Ratings of Members of Standard Insurance Group and Pacific Guardian Life Insurance Company, Ltd.

{July 21st, 2017} by Best's News Service

Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating (FSR) of A (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating (Long-Term ICR) of “a+” of Standard Insurance Company (Portland, OR) and its affiliate, The Standard Life Insurance Company of New York (White Plains, NY), together referred to as the Standard Insurance Group (Standard Group). Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the Long-Term ICR of […]

House panel passes bill to replace DOL fiduciary rule with one requiring disclosure of conflicts

{July 20th, 2017} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

In a party line vote, the House Education and the Workforce Committee approved legislation on Wednesday that would kill the Labor Department fiduciary rule and replace it with an advice standard based on disclosure. It wasn’t the only effort in the House on Wednesday to take the DOL rule off the books. Later in the […]

Ameritas launches competitive new whole life products

{July 20th, 2017} by Ameritas

Lincoln, Neb. (July 20, 2017) – Ameritas Life Insurance Corp. recently introduced a suite of new whole life insurance products designed to offer more flexibility and options to help meet a wider range of consumer financial planning goals. The products were designed with field partners and their clients in mind. “The new whole life lineup […]

San Diego insurance agent charged in $1.1 million senior investment scam

{July 20th, 2017} by The California Department of Insurance

News: 2017 Press Release For Release: July 20, 2017 Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566 San Diego insurance agent charged in $1.1 million senior investment scam Search for more victims underway SAN DIEGO, Calif. – Insurance agent Shawn Heffernan, 42, of San Diego, was arraigned today on multiple felony grand theft and elder fraud charges. Heffernan was arrested […]

New DOL Rule Changes the Way Annuity Salespeople Do Business

{July 20th, 2017} by Shawn Sparks

It’s probably not hyperbole to say that the new U.S. Department of Labor fiduciary rule is completely changing the financial services sector. The rule, which started implementation on June 9, is altering the way many annuity salespeople do business.  Click HERE to view the original story via ThinkAdvisor. Unless your head has been in the sand, more […]

3 Ways to Get Life Insurance Clients to Buy Enough Coverage

{July 20th, 2017} by Ryan Hanley

Everybody needs life insurance, but most people wait until they are older to purchase coverage. This leaves life insurance agents struggling to find new clients. According to Investopedia, millennials are the least likely to purchase a life insurance policy, and they overestimate coverage costs by 213%. In total, only 57% of U.S. citizens have life […]

MassMutual hit with lawsuit over pay, desk-use charges on sales employees

{July 20th, 2017} by Greg Ryan

Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. has been hit with a class action lawsuit that claims it is improperly charging sales employees for using desks at its offices and denying them minimum wage and overtime pay. A former MassMutual sales employee, Jason Berube, leveled the allegations against the Springfield-based financial giant in Suffolk County Superior Court late last month. […]

Nine Life Insurers Pin Hopes on Sales Potential of New Mobile App

{July 20th, 2017} by Warren S. Hersch

Nine life insurers have signed up to distribute term life insurance products through a phone app that offers a simplified underwriting process. The app developer’s claim to fame: the software’s ability to generate a free will and living trust — estate plan components unavailable from other insurtech companies offering streamlined underwriting. The creation of Seattle-based Tomorrow […]

Manulife selling John Hancock would be ‘a mistake’: Shareholder

{July 20th, 2017} by BNN.ca Staff

Manulife Financial should hold on to John Hancock, according to one shareholder. The lifeco’s shares spiked in afternoon trading Thursday and have held the gains after The Wall Street Journal reported Manulife is exploring an initial public offering or spinoff of its John Hancock unit. But Agilith Capital Principal Patrick Horan believes either decision would […]

Annuity Industry Must Adapt to ‘Very Challenging’ Times: Raymond James Vet

{July 20th, 2017} by Alex Padalka

The annuities industry is facing a very challenging environment in light of the partial implementation of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule, Scott Stolz writes in ThinkAdvisor. And how the industry adjusts to what financial advisors choose to offer their clients will determine whether it survives at all, according to Stolz.  Click HERE to read the original story via Life […]

Do Fee-Based Annuities Have a Future?

{July 20th, 2017} by Scott Stolz

Commission-free annuities designed for use within fee-based accounts have been available for over a decade. However, the few major distributors trying to make fee-based annuities a significant portion of their total annuity sales have struggled. Additionally, total sales in this area have languished: In 2016, Morningstar estimates that total fee-based variable annuity sales were only […]

Panel: DOL Rule Will ‘Most Certainly’ Be Delayed

{July 20th, 2017} by John Hilton

Phase two of the controversial Department of Labor fiduciary rule will almost certainly be delayed beyond Jan. 1, panel convened by The American College agreed today. However, panelists cautioned, that does not mean the fiduciary standard is going away. It does mean that smaller changes could yield big dividends for the industry. For example, the […]

National Holdings’ acquisition of broker-dealer WFG Investments and its 200 advisers called off

{July 20th, 2017} by Bruce Kelly

National Holdings’ deal to acquire WFG Investments, an independent broker-dealer, has fallen apart. Wilson Williams, the chairman and CEO of Williams Financial Group, the parent of WFG, said in an interview on Monday that selling the firm’s assets to National wound up being too “complicated.” Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required.

Thrivent Turns Away DOL’s ‘Gift Horse’ in Lawsuit

{July 20th, 2017} by Emile Hallez

Thrivent’s lawyers were not amused by a letter from the DOL that appeared to deliver the fund provider a win in the lawsuit the company is pursuing against the agency. The plaintiff issued a response in court Monday, asking that a letter the Department of Labor sent to the judge overseeing the case, as well as a […]

A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s Affirm Delaware Life Insurance Company Ratings

{July 20th, 2017} by Delaware Life

WALTHAM, Mass., July 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Insurer ratings services A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s have affirmed their financial strength ratings for Delaware Life Insurance Company and Delaware Life Insurance Company of New York(collectively, “Delaware Life”).  A.M. Best affirmed its Delaware Life financial strength rating of “A- (Excellent)” and issuer credit rating of “a- (Excellent).” The outlook […]

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