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Wink’s Articles

Leveraging permanent life in retirement and protection planning

{March 28th, 2017} by Mark Peterson

As a financial professional, you’re likely well aware of the role and value proposition of permanent life insurance. Yet, the most recent LIMRA Ownership Study report, published earlier this year, shared that 2016 marked the first study period when owners of individual life insurance policies were more likely to have term life products than permanent […]

Two More Insurers Jump Into Expanding IUL Pool

{March 21st, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

The addition of new indexed universal life products from two carriers is helping fuel a strong IUL market after an 18-month pause in sales as companies revamped their lineups. IUL sales, measured by premium revenue, rose to a record $1.86 billion in 2016, according to Wink’s Sales & Market report which tracks the industry. But […]

Rules governing indexed universal life insurance may not go far enough

{March 21st, 2017} by Greg Iacurci

New rules designed to curb overly rosy policy return illustrations, the primary sales tool used to sell indexed universal life insurance, seem to be having their desired effect, but they may not go far enough. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required   Indexed universal life insurance has been a hot-selling […]

Indexed Life Sales Dip 1.3% in 4Q, Flat in 2016

{March 14th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

Indexed universal life (IUL) sales dipped 1.3 percent to $534.5 million in the fourth quarter 2016 compared to the year-ago period. The drop was due primarily to declines from two sellers, according to industry tracker “Wink’s Sales & Market Report.” IUL sales, measured by premium revenue, for 2016, rose to a record $1.86 billion. That […]

Indexed universal life insurance sales hit new high

{March 6th, 2017} by Warren S. Hersch

Despite industry concerns about an 18-month-old regulatory guideline for indexed universal life insurance, sales of the popular product remain robust, new research shows. The 78th edition of “Wink’s Sales & Market Report,” which aggregates data from 48 manufacturers of indexed universal life products, reveals that IUL premium revenue for the three months ending December 31, […]

Another Record-Setting Year for Indexed Life Sales! Wink, Inc. Releases Fourth Quarter, 2016 Indexed Life Sales Results

{March 1st, 2017} by Wink, Inc

Pleasant Hill, Iowa. February 28, 2017– Forty-eight indexed life insurance carriers participated in the 78th edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report. Fourth quarter indexed universal life (IUL) sales were $534.5 million, compared with sales of $541.5 million for the fourth quarter of 2015. Fourth quarter indexed life sales were up 18.0% when compared with […]

Allianz: FIAs to Remain a Growth Engine

{February 21st, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

Allianz will continue to focus on fixed indexed annuity sales in the U.S. in the face of declining variable annuity sales, a top executive said Friday. With U.S. variable annuity sales flat, “that means our focus to grow the business is clearly the fixed indexed annuity business,” said Dieter Wemmer, chief financial officer of the global […]

Allianz Life Appoints Walther to Oversee B/D Relationships

{January 11th, 2017} by Cyril Tuohy

Fixed indexed annuity (FIA) market leader Allianz Life has announced the appointment of sales veteran Corey Walther to lead the company’s broker-/dealer distribution channel sales growth. Walther, who joined Allianz Life nearly 20 years ago, assumes the title of head of Distribution Relationship Management. He will report to Tom Burns, CEO of Allianz Life Financial […]

Top 10 Annuity Stories of 2016

{December 29th, 2016} by John Hilton

Annuities had an up-and-down 2016. The wild ride was reflected in our top 10 annuity stories for the year. Of course, the Department of Labor fiduciary rule was the most significant influencer on annuities. Firms and advisors alike scrambled to figure out what the rule meant for their business. That propelled many of the stories […]

Voya: From Orange to Origami

{December 15th, 2016} by Kerry Petcher

Almost four years after its IPO, Voya (formerly ING-US) has rebranded, retooled itself as a fixed indexed annuity shop and launched an ad campaign featuring origami rodents that talk. But it is still searching for the right mix of products, personnel and organizational structure. So, what’s up at Voya Financial? Like its fellow life insurers, […]

Athene to Deepen Bank, B/D Relationships

{December 13th, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

Athene USA, a major seller of fixed annuities in the U.S., will seek to expand retail annuity distribution through banks and broker-dealers, CEO Grant Kvalheim said Friday. The company, based in West Des Moines, Iowa, is a subsidiary of Athene Holding, which raised $1.1 billion in an initial public offering. Athene Holding shares began trading […]

Despite NAIC guideline, IUL insurance sales remain healthy

{December 6th, 2016} by Warren S. Hersch

Transamerica maintains its No. 1 ranking in indexed life insurance sales, with an 11.7 percent market share. Sales of indexed universal life insurance fell 5 percent in the third quarter of 2016 compared with the year-ago period. But indexed universal life insurance sales maintained an upward momentum amid industry concerns about a 2015 state-based regulatory […]

Indexed annuity sales on track to reach $60 billion

{December 2nd, 2016} by Kristen Beckman

Indexed annuity sales are on track to reach $60 billion for 2016, despite an 8 percent decrease in sales to $14.3 billion in the third quarter, according to data from Wink Inc.’s sales and marketing report. Sales in the category were up 3 percent compared with last year, however. The report includes third-quarter results from […]

FIA Leader Allianz Shuffles Top Execs

{December 2nd, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

Mike Brandriet, a nine-year veteran of Allianz Life Financial Services, has been named president of the company and takes over from longtime leader Robert DeChellis, Allianz Life Insurance of North America announced. DeChellis, who has led Allianz Life Financial Services for more than 10 years, will head a new business unit “based on a strategy […]

3Q IUL Sales Up and Down, Report Finds

{November 28th, 2016} by John Hilton

Third-quarter indexed universal life (IUL) sales were $452.9 million, down 5 percent from the third quarter 2015, according to Wink’s Sales & Market Report. IUL sales were up nearly 3 percent compared to the second quarter, noted Sheryl J. Moore, president and CEO of both Moore Market Intelligence and Wink, Inc. “It is amazing to see that indexed life sales […]

Indexed annuity sales on pace for record year, as variable annuities take another big hit

{November 22nd, 2016} by Greg Iacurci

Fixed indexed annuity sales are on pace for a record year in 2016 as low interest rates and product features drive their popularity among broker-dealers, and despite headwinds from a new Labor Department investment-advice regulation that will make sales of such products more difficult.   Click HERE to view the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required […]

FIA Sales Ready to Push the Reset Button?

{November 15th, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

When the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule was released in April, analysts expected a rush to sell more fixed indexed annuities (FIAs) in anticipation of distributors having a tougher time selling them next year. But instead of rising in the third quarter from the second quarter, sequential sales of FIAs softened well ahead of schedule. […]

Even Math Teachers Are at a Loss to Understand Annuities

{November 9th, 2016} by TARA SIEGEL BERNARD

Even a well-caffeinated person with an advanced degree in math would have a hard time deciphering a 53-page contract called “Your Flexible Premium Indexed and Declared Interest Deferred Annuity Policy.” Melanie Panush Lindert, a 66-year-old elementary school dance teacher in Los Angeles, was sold one of these mind-numbingly complex products last year through her workplace […]

Analyst: Some Firms Want to Keep Trips, Incentives

{October 18th, 2016} by John Hilton

Most industry professionals consider the Best Interest Contract Exemption (BICE) the most detested part of the Department of Labor fiduciary rule. Yet some of them may end up using it to continuing selling fixed annuities without interruption, according to one analyst. Selling under the BICE will enable financial institutions to continue offering trips and other […]

Average Agent Comp For Indexed Annuities At Decade-Long Low

{October 12th, 2016} by Annuity news

Pleasant Hill, Iowa. October 6, 2016- How can one determine what is “reasonable compensation” on an annuity? The Department of Labor issued its final fiduciary rule on April 6, 2016. Among the products that the regulation affects are annuity sales that are funded with qualified monies. Indexed annuities, as a product class, are in the […]

Indexed annuity commission averages 4.6 percent

{October 11th, 2016} by Kristen Beckman

The average street-level commission for indexed annuities was 4.6 percent as of the second quarter, according to Wink Inc.’s sales and marketing report. This is the lowest commission level in a decade. Average commissions were 8.1 percent during the second quarter of 2006 and have fallen steadily since then, according to Wink’s data. Moore Market […]

Nationwide To Acquire Jefferson National

{September 30th, 2016} by John Hilton

Nationwide’s acquisition of Jefferson National, a blockbuster deal announced this morning, gives the venerable company an opening in the fee-only advisor space. The acquisition will expand Nationwide’s ability to sell financial service products through Jefferson National’s network of RIAs and fee-based advisors, Nationwide said in a news release. Nationwide has been rocketing up the fixed annuity sales board […]

Indexed annuities sales fall short of record: Wink

{September 2nd, 2016} by LifeHealthPro editors

Wink’s Sales & Market Report, a resource for indexed annuity and indexed life sales data, completed its first full year reporting on all non-variable deferred annuities which include indexed annuity, traditional fixed annuity and multi-year guaranteed annuity (MYGA) product lines. Fifty-three indexed annuity providers, 48 fixed annuity providers and 55 MYGA companies participated for second […]

AIG Rides Annuity Sales To Financial Success

{August 30th, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

Nearly a decade after American International Group almost collapsed, the New York-based insurance giant has re-invented itself as the top seller of fixed and variable annuities. In the first half of the year, AIG finished in the No. 1 spot with $9.78 billion worth of individual fixed and variable annuity sales. Jackson National Life was second with $9.35 billion […]

FIAs to take a hit next year, courtesy of DOL fiduciary rule

{August 19th, 2016} by Nick Thornton

 Sales of fixed indexed annuities hit $16.2 billion in the second quarter of 2016, a 30 percent increase over the same period last year and an all-time quarterly record, according to LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute. For the first half to 2016, Fixed indexed annuity sales were $31.9 billion, a 32 percent increase of the first half […]

American Equity Committed to FIA Market

{August 9th, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

The CEO of American Equity Investment Life Holding moved Thursday to reassure distributors and investors that the company has no plans to abandon the fixed indexed annuity business, which is on track to close $60 billion in sales this year. Executives with the Iowa-based company earlier this year raised doubts about whether the company, the […]

American Financial: DOL Rule Will Have Greatest Impact On Nonregistered Reps

{August 9th, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

The Department of Labor’s new rule raising investment advice standards into retirement accounts will have the greatest impact on non-registered retail representatives. That’s the word from a top executive with American Financial Group. But sales by nonregistered reps through the retail channel represented only about 10 percent of American Financial’s annuity sales in the second […]

Banks, B/Ds To Overtake Independent Agents In FIA Sales

{August 2nd, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

Banks and insurance broker/dealers will overtake the independent agent channel in selling fixed indexed annuities “likely someday.” That’s according to the CEO of American Equity Life, a top FIA seller. FIAs, which have recorded torrid sales recently, are sold mostly through independent agents. However, with Department of Labor regulators raising investment advice standards, FIAs will […]

Both annuity awareness, sales growing

{July 26th, 2016} by Peggy Bresnick

June 2016 marked the second annual Annuity Awareness Month, an event designed to increase consumer knowledge of the benefits of annuities. Different organizations bonded together to form The Coalition for Annuity Awareness that manages the event, including Beacon Research, the Society of Financial Service Professionals (FSP), the National Association for Fixed Annuities (NAFA), the National […]

Americans seek raises, even in retirement income

{July 26th, 2016} by Marlene Y. Satter

Americans are worried about how they’ll pay their bills if they don’t get pay raises, and that extends to retirement income. That’s according to a new study from Allianz Life Insurance Co. of America, which found Americans starting to look beyond the job to wonder how they’ll get pay raises during retirement. Competition in recruiting […]

Distribution Channels for Fixed Indexed Annuity Sales Changing After DOL Rule

{May 18th, 2016} by Rachel Summit

The majority of fixed indexed annuity products are sold through independent insurance agents. But after the final DOL fiduciary rule was announce on April 6, it’s much less desirable for insurance companies to sell these annuities through independent agents. The insurance companies will be held liable for the BICE requirements because the independent marketing organizations […]

Allianz: DOL Might Pull FIAs Out Of BICE

{May 17th, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

A senior executive with the top-selling fixed indexed annuity (FIA) insurer in the U.S. said the Department of Labor might pull FIAs out of the most restrictive exemption when sold in retirement accounts. Regulators added FIAs to the Best Interest Contract Exemption in the final version of a fiduciary rule, or “Conflict of Interest” rule, published April […]

Broker-dealers could see higher share of fixed indexed annuity sales thanks to DOL fiduciary rule

{May 6th, 2016} by Greg Iacurci

The sale of fixed indexed annuities through independent insurance agents, by far the largest source of FIA distribution, is likely to take a hard hit as a result of the Labor Department’s fiduciary rule, and some believe insurers may lean more on other channels such as broker-dealers and banks in this eventuality. Click HERE to […]

Observers Worry DOL Rule Change Could Hurt Fixed Indexed Annuities

{April 12th, 2016} by Frank Klimko

WASHINGTON – Although the new conflict-of-interest fiduciary rule adopted a broad swath of insurance industry-friendly language, trade representatives continue to harbor misgivings that the standards on fixed indexed annuities could hurt sales, reduce commissions and disrupt the annuity marketplace. The new FIA rules are part of the final fiduciary regulation just published by U.S. Department […]

Twitter reactions to the finalized DOL fiduciary rule #SaveYourSavings

{April 6th, 2016} by Carley Meiners

April 6th was the day we’ve all were waiting for: The Department of Labor released its finalized fiduciary rule. Many people voiced their opinion and followed along as the DOL shared a live announcement on the rule. Twitter blew up with reactions about the DOL’s fiduciary rule. Click HERE for a collection of Tweets on what is being discussed.  

Crashing The FIA Party: Not Just The Top Companies Driving Growth

{March 24th, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

    To get a sense of just how robust sales of fixed indexed annuities (FIAs) have become, it’s worth taking a closer look at the league tables: Most life and annuity carriers in the market posted higher FIA sales last year than they did in 2014. Some increases were truly eye-popping. Integrity Life, a […]

Wink: Indexed Annuity Sales Hit All-Time Highs for Quarter and Full

{March 22nd, 2016} by By Dennis Gorski, managing editor-online, BestWeek: Dennis.Gorski@ambest.com

 PLEASANT HILL, Iowa – Indexed annuity sales reached record highs for the fourth-quarter and full-year 2015, according  to a new report by insurance and annuity markets consultancy Wink Inc.   Sales in the quarter were $15.5 billion, a more than 30% gain over a year ago, and rose 13% to $53 billion for the  full year, according […]

Mutual of Omaha jumps into hot indexed universal life insurance market

{March 21st, 2016} by Jamie Johnson

Mutual of Omaha is expanding its reach in the universal life insurance market with the debut of its first indexed product, coming at a time when such policies are surging in popularity and more insurers are pushing to get in on the action. Click HERE to view the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required     […]

New FIA Index Designed for Rising Rate Environment

{March 15th, 2016} by Cyril Tuohy

The introduction of a new balanced index option for investors in the Allianz 360 and Allianz 222 fixed indexed annuity (FIA) product line will offer financial advisors options better suited to a rising interest rate environment. The new index option, the PIMCO Tactical Balanced Index, is open to new Allianz 222 and 360 FIA contract […]

Wall Street finds new ways to sell old, opaque products

{January 27th, 2016} by Yakob Peterseil, 2016, Bloomberg

As securities watchdogs crack down on complex investments that promise mom-and-pop investors access to strategies of trading pros, Wall Street is finding a way to sell the same products in places those regulators don’t reach. The investments, which follow proprietary indexes developed by banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Credit Suisse, are quietly spreading into […]

5 steps to prospecting for ideal annuity clients

{January 19th, 2016} by Peggy Bresnick

When it comes to prospecting for new clients, agents and brokers need a plan to find and attract not only new customers, but great clients who will bring value to the business. Agents and brokers who do a good job prospecting can not only substantially increase their customer base, but they can also grow annuity […]

The 11 biggest announcements from life and health insurers this week

{January 19th, 2016} by Lynette Gil

Paradigm shift news roundup: Deloitte, American Academy of Actuaries, Boston Mutual, NAILBA Charitable Foundation and Legal & General, MetLife, SBL, Wink, Borislow Insurance, Forethought Life, Guardian, MAPFRE  Click HERE to read article    Fifty-five indexed annuity carriers participated in the 73rd edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report, representing 99.8 percent of indexed annuity production. […]

Annuity Industry No Longer Waiting Out The Storm

{January 13th, 2016} by Linda Koco

What to make of annuity trends in in 2015? Here is a look-back in four key areas. The overall picture is one of an industry actively engaging in developing its business. No more sitting in a cave, waiting out an economic storm.   Click HERE to view the full article  …… Annuity distribution One change […]

Concern Mounts On Whether New Rules Will Apply To Indexed Annuities

{December 15th, 2015} by Ben Mattlin

In November, rumors were spreading that proposed new rules from the U.S. Department of Labor to ensure fairness among dealers of retirement products might extend beyond variable annuities (VAs) to their fixed-indexed counterparts. “There’s been a lot of concern recently,” says Rhett Owens, a commercial litigation attorney at Burr & Forman, in Birmingham, Ala. “People […]

Indexed Products Explode In Popularity, But Few Advisors Understand Them

{December 9th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

Indexed products, one of the hottest-selling categories in the life and annuity space, are on the minds of nearly every financial advisor working in the U.S. today. But how many advisors understand how they really work? Floors … caps … participation rates … bonuses … spreads … point to point. Click HERE to view article  […]

FIAs Heat Up With Volatility Control Options

{December 8th, 2015} by Linda Koco

Genworth is the newest carrier to enter the increasingly crowded market for volatility controlled indices inside of fixed index annuities (FIAs). As reported last week, Genworth has debuted an “uncapped volatility control spread index crediting strategy.” It is based on the Barclays U.S. Low Volatility II Equity ER Risk Controlled Index (Barclays U.S. Low Volatility […]

Nationwide Vaults To The FIA Leaders Table

{December 7th, 2015} by Linda Koco

  Fixed index annuity sales roared to another record in third quarter 2015. The period produced some surprises too, such as a new carrier at the leadership table, a surge in FIA sales at banks, and a further dip in average compensation. The quarterly total closed at $13.5 billion, up nearly 21 percent from the […]

Sales of Annuities Tied to Strategies Fall in Quarter

{December 3rd, 2015} by BEN EISEN, BLOOMBERG BRIEF

BY BEN EISEN, BLOOMBERG BRIEF Sales of annuities tied to formula-driven proprietary indexes and other specialized strategies declined during the third quarter as two sellers pulled back. Insurers sold about $3 billion of the products, according to data from Wink’s Sales & Market Report for the three months through September, released Nov. 25. That’s down […]

Indexed Annuity Sales Continue To Break Records In 3Q

{November 30th, 2015} by Press Release

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

Fixed-indexed annuities soar in popularity

{November 30th, 2015} by Greg Iacurci

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

Retirement planning should start now for financially beleaguered millennials

{October 25th, 2015} by Peggy Bresnick

Composed of those who are roughly ages 18 to early 30s, the millennial generation is generally curious, educated, technologically adept and socially conscious. With all its gifts, however, millennials are also living with the fallout from events like 9/11 and the Great Recession, which combine with rising costs of higher education to place them in […]

Voya Financial Offers New Index Crediting Strategy to Diversify its Suite of Fixed Index Annuity Product Solutions

{September 29th, 2015} by PRNewswire

WINDSOR, Conn., Sept. 28, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA) announced today that it is offering customers a new index crediting strategy within the company’s Voya Secure Index series and Retirement Index Select fixed index annuity product lines. The Voya Point-to-Point Volatility Control Strategy features Deutsche Bank’s proprietary CROCI (Cash Return on Capital Invested) […]

Year-over-year indexed annuity sales down 2 percent for quarter

{September 10th, 2015} by Business Record

Total second-quarter sales of indexed annuities were $12.2 billion, up nearly 8 percent compared with first-quarter sales, but down more than 2 percent compared with second quarter 2014 sales, according to Wink’s Sales & Market Report. Fifty-two carriers participated in the report, representing 99.8 percent of indexed annuity production. Allianz Life was the leading carrier […]

30 under 30: Meet the millennials who are transforming the insurance industry

{September 8th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

Their parents, boomers and some seniors, told millennials they could be anything. Great songs about the children being the future were sung back in the 80s and early 90s. With such high hopes for their future, millennials embarked down a road of immense dreams. Click HERE to view article      Victoria Peterson Vice president of operations […]

Why fixed indexed annuity sales continue to grow


The “Great Recession,” followed by a sustained low-interest rate environment, are just a couple of factors that have contributed to a fairly tumultuous period in the life insurance industry over the past half-decade. One bright spot within the industry, however, has been the continued robust growth of fixed indexed annuity (FIA) sales. First introduced in […]

8 reasons why FIA sales are soaring

{August 11th, 2015} by Peggy Bresnick

Fixed index annuities combine the reliability and predictability of a fixed annuity with the ability to benefit from stock market trends inherent in index annuities, which rely on a stock market index like the Dow Jones Industrial Average or the Standard & Poor’s 500. Individuals that opt for fixed index annuities have the security of […]

FIA Buyers Keep Getting Younger

{July 9th, 2015} by Linda Koco

Fixed index annuity (FIA) buyers are getting increasingly younger, according to an analysis of sales data for the first quarter periods in the last four years. The average age for buyers in first quarter 2015 was 62, with the age range being 47 to 70, according to quarterly FIA sales trends data from Wink Inc. […]

Millennials want in on annuities

{July 7th, 2015} by Hadley Malcolm

Make way, Baby Boomers, Millennials want in on your annuities. The nation’s youngest batch of retirement savers are more interested than any other age group in the investing strategy behind annuities, even though most of them have likely never heard the word “annuity,” according to a survey just out from the Indexed Annuity Leadership Council. […]

Pacific Life Strengthens New Channel With FIA Launch

{June 26th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy

Pacific Index Dimensions, a new fixed index annuity launched earlier this month by Pacific Life, is the company’s new FIA designed specifically for distribution by Pacific Life’s Producer Alliance Program, a distribution channel launched three years ago. Adding the Producer Alliance Program channel has made Pacific Life’s products available to a broader range of retail […]

A New Warning on ‘Indexed’ Annuities

{June 9th, 2015} by Leslie Scism

If an insurance agent pitches you an “indexed annuity,” here is something to ask: What fabulous prize are you helping him, or her, to win? The question springs from a probe under way by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) targeting sales incentives for annuities, which are tax-deferred savings, investment and lifetime-income products issued by insurance […]

FIAs Shine A Light In A Foggy Financial Picture

{June 2nd, 2015} by Charlie Gipple

As the Federal Reserve has indicated, we expect an increase in the federal funds rate at some point during 2015. If this happens, it is possible your clients’ fixed income investments could decline in value, hurting their broader retirement portfolio. Older retirement income plans included an increasing shift to traditional fixed income solutions such as […]

The 9 biggest announcements from life and health insurers this week

{June 1st, 2015} by Lynette Gil

Paradigm shift news roundup: Petersen International, NAIFA, MetLife, USAA, Wink, Guardian Life, LIMRA, Lincoln Financial, New York Life Click HERE to read..

Indexed annuity sales off to strong start in 2015

{May 26th, 2015} by Daniel Williams

First quarter indexed annuity sales were down nearly 5.0 percent when compared to the previous quarter, but up nearly 5.0 percent when compared with the same period last year. Total first quarter sales topped $11.3 billion. “Indexed annuity sales began the year with sales greater than any other first quarter has in the history of the […]

New Annuities Hit A Market Moving In Two Directions

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

Two big players in the U.S. annuity market, Allianz Life and Voya Financial, have announced annuity product launches into a marketplace that is moving in two opposite directions at once. Allianz has introduced new investment options for the company’s Vision Variable Annuity and Connections Variable Annuity product lines. These choices are available to new business […]

As indexed universal life sales climb, be sure to mind the risks

{April 21st, 2015} by Darla Mercado

Indexed universal life insurance has been pretty hot as of late, but how much do you know about how it works and when to use it? Annual indexed universal life insurance premiums hit $1.56 billion at the end of 2014, reflecting a 14% increase from $1.356 billion in 2013 according to Wink’s Sales and Market […]

Des Moines annuity firms see 2014 sales growth

{March 17th, 2015} by Matthew Patane, mpatane@dmreg.com

Insurance companies with operations in the Des Moines metro saw their annuity sales grow in 2014, a new report shows. The indexed annuities industry had $46.9 billion in sales for all of last year, according to the Wink’s Sales & Market Report. That’s up from $38.7 billion in 2013, said Wink, a Pleasant Hill insurance […]

Index Product Sales Surge In 2014

{March 11th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

Sales of fixed index insurance products surged in 2014 with annual production reaching into the double-digits, according to figures just out from Wink Inc. Both product lines hit new records too, according to the index product research firm. For FIAs, the 2014 sales totaled nearly $46.9 billion, surpassing the 2013 record of more than $38.6 […]

IUL Moves Into Era Of Volatility Control

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

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

National Annuity Awareness Month

{February 20th, 2015} by SAFE

  JUNE IS THE SECOND ANNUAL NATIONAL ANNUITY AWARENESS MONTH During the month of June, fellow trade associations will provide educational material, webcasts and social media communications to help educate financial professionals and the public on the important role annuity products play in helping Americans save for retirement as part of a secure retirement savings plan.   An array of […]

FIAs At Age 20: Industry Leaders Weigh In

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

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

New Indexed Annuities Grab Market Share as Banks Jump In

{February 2nd, 2015} by Bloombery News

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

‘Longevity’ in annuities could be the big 2015 focus

{December 29th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

Where the retirement market will go next year is anybody’s guess, but insurance industry experts foresee a ramp-up in product development for certain types of annuities. Click HERE to view the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required     The growing appeal of indexed annuities compared with variable ones is reflected in data from Morningstar […]

The new variable and indexed annuity leaders

{December 24th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

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

The New Buzz with Indexed Annuities: Hybrid Indices

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

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

Make an annuity date with real estate right now

{November 18th, 2014} by Kevin Startt

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

Wells Fargo pushes insurers to lower commissions on indexed annuities

{September 17th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

Annuity gatekeepers at broker-dealers are closely watching Wells Fargo Advisors as it presses insurers to lower commissions for the indexed annuities sold by its representatives.   Click HERE to view via InvestmentNews; registration required           During the second quarter of 2014, sales climbed to $12.6 billion in total, up nearly 37% […]

Why Some Don’t Sell Fixed Annuities: Opinion

{September 17th, 2014} by Linda Koco

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

Younger Adults Buy Fixed Annuities, Too

{September 10th, 2014} by Linda Koco

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

GLWBs Still Rock In The Retirement Set

{September 3rd, 2014} by Linda Koco

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

The insanity in indexed annuity sales growth

{August 28th, 2014} by Kevin Startt

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

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

{August 27th, 2014} by Matthew Patane

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

Annuities Got It Goin’ On: Blog

{August 20th, 2014} by Steve Morelli

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

Annuities’ Month-Long Celebration

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

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

Global Atlantic Targets Life & Annuity Business

{July 15th, 2014} by Linda Koco

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

NAFA Works with Treasury Department on Fixed Annuity Inclusion for QLACs

{July 2nd, 2014} by NAFA

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

Allianz Life Is On A Tear With FIA Sales

{June 24th, 2014} by Linda Koco

Top-selling fixed index annuity (FIA) writer Allianz Life turned in some jaw-dropping sales numbers for first quarter. Its total FIA sales hit nearly $2.8 billion, up 142 percent from the $1.1 billion it reported for first quarter last year, according to Wink Inc. The company’s FIA market share is now 26 percent, up from nearly […]

New annuities offer exposure to equities and downside protection

{June 12th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

For life insurers, the next big area for product development is the uncapped indexed annuity: a strategy that purports to allow nervous clients to benefit from surging equity indexes while having downside protection. The last six to 12 months have been hot on the development front for life insurers that sell indexed annuities. Their enthusiasm […]

Guaranteed features propel indexed-annuity sales

{June 6th, 2014} by Darla Mercado

Just as living benefits helped drive broker-dealers’ variable annuity feeding frenzy years ago, these guaranteed features appear to be propelling firms’ sales of indexed annuities. Click HERE to view the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required         Total first-quarter sales of indexed annuities hit $10.9 billion, according to data from Wink Inc.’s […]

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

{June 3rd, 2014} by Matthew Patane

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

June is national annuity awareness month

{June 3rd, 2014} by Daniel Williams

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

It’s Not All About the GLWBs

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

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

Investment News Editorial: Finra right to watch indexed annuities

{May 11th, 2014} by InvestmentNews Editorial

To its credit, the Financial Regulatory Authority Inc. is paying close attention to how and when investors are exchanging variable annuities for other products, such as indexed annuities. Click HERE to view the full story; registration required         The indexed annuity business has been booming, with sales last year climbing to $38.6 […]

Fixed annuity sales receiving added scrutiny from Finra

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

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

More Allianz FIAs Sold By Registered Reps

{April 18th, 2014} by Linda Koco

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

Wink, Inc. Releases Fourth Quarter, 2013 Indexed Sales Results

{March 14th, 2014} by Press Release

Indexed Life and Annuity Sales Continue Their Record Breaking Sales Streak Wink, Inc. Releases Fourth Quarter, 2013 Indexed Sales Results Pleasant Hill, Iowa. March 13, 2014- Forty-four indexed annuity carriers participated in the 66th edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report, representing 99.8% of indexed annuity production. Total fourth quarter sales were $11.5 billion. In […]

Indexed annuity sales hit $11.5 billion in Q4 2013

{March 14th, 2014} by Daniel Williams

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

Indexed annuity sales hit $11.5 billion in Q4 2013

{March 13th, 2014} by Daniel Williams

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

Magic Johnson moves Iowa insurer to Illinois

{January 21st, 2014} by Victor Epstein

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

Average IA Commissions Dip To Lowest Level Ever

{January 14th, 2014} by Linda Koco

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

Q3 indexed annuity sales hit $10 billion

{November 22nd, 2013} by Maria Wood

As the end of the year approaches, indexed annuity sales are rushing toward the finish life, hitting a record $10 billion in the third quarter, according to the most recent compilation from Wink’s Sales & Market Report, which tracks indexed annuity and life sales. That $10 billion figure represents a 9 percent jump from the […]

IA Sales Break Second Consecutive Sales Record

{November 19th, 2013} by Press Release

Pleasant Hill, Iowa. November 15, 2013. Forty-two indexed annuity carriers participated in the 65th edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report, representing 98.4% of indexed annuity production. Total third quarter sales were $10.0 billion. In reviewing third quarter indexed annuity sales, production was up more than 9.0% when compared to the previous quarter, and up […]

Record IA Sales Top Previous Record By 5%

{September 20th, 2013} by Wink, Inc.

Pleasant Hill, Iowa. September 16, 2013– Forty-two indexed annuity carriers participated in the 64th edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report, representing 99.8% of indexed annuity production. Total second quarter sales were $9.2 billion. In reviewing second quarter indexed annuity sales, production was up more than 17.0% when compared to the previous quarter, and up […]

Indexed annuity, life sales rise in Q2

{September 20th, 2013} by Maria Wood

Overcoming a first-quarter slump, indexed annuity and indexed life sales bolted upward in the second quarter. According to the most recent Wink’s Sales & Market Report from Wink, Inc., total sales of indexed annuities hit $9.2 billion in Q2. That tally represents a 17 percent jump in production when compared to the previous quarter and […]

AnnuitySpecs, LifeSpecs Rebranded As Wink

{August 21st, 2013} by Wink, Inc.

A widely-recognized resource in the life insurance and annuity industries has recently rebranded in order to encompass the many products and services offered by the company. Wink, Inc. is now the competitive intelligence firm behind the #1 source for annuity and life insurance product information- the AnnuitySpecs and LifeSpecs tools. Wink is also distributing Wink’s […]

Q1 indexed annuity sales down

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

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

Wink Inc.: First-Quarter US Sales of Indexed Annuities at Two-Year Low; Large Drops in Sales by Allianz Life, Aviva

{June 11th, 2013} by Fran Matso Lysiak

PLEASANT HILL, Iowa – Total first-quarter sales of indexed annuities in the United States dropped to $7.8 billion, down 2.8% from the same period in 2012, according to Wink Inc., formerly known as AnnuitySpecs.com. Sales haven’t been this low in two years — since the first quarter of 2011, Sheryl J. Moore, president and chief […]

Will insurers ape Aviva and peel back benefits on fixed annuities?

{November 21st, 2010} by Darla Mercado

  On Monday, Aviva USA will roll out a series of new changes to its fixed-annuity lineup, including reductions on agents’ commissions and the discontinuation of one of its income riders. And the move could have a ripple effect on other carriers, industry watchers noted. Click HERE to view the full story via InvestmentNews; registration […]

Allianz chief wants bigger piece of indexed-life market

{June 15th, 2010} by Darla Mercado

  Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, already a major player in the indexed-annuity arena, is looking to grab a bigger share of the indexed-life-insurance market. Click HERE to view the full story via InvestmentNews; registration required   The carrier manufactures the top-selling indexed annuity, the MasterDex 10, according to researcher AnnuitySpecs.