(Q32012) Annuity Interview w/ Sheryl J Moore
December 7, 2012 by Matt Neuman
Indexed Annuity Report – Tips and Trends from Expert Sheryl Moore!
Recently I had the great opportunity to interview fixed indexed annuity expert, Sheryl J. Moore. Sheryl is the President and CEO of Moore Market Intelligence, and collects data on indexed annuity industry trends and the marketplace. Sheryl has helped me to personally stay ontop of the industry, and ahead of the curve, so I was excited when the opportunity to interview her regarding the current state of our marketplace surfaced.
The 3rd quarter, 2012 (3Q2012) AnnuitySpecs.com Indexed Sales & Market Report was just released, and I wanted to spend my time with Sheryl getting her insight into the numbers, and the trends she’s seeing. Hopefully you find her opinions as thought-provoking as I did. Without further ado…
Matt Neuman: We’re nearly done with 2012 and 75% of the year’s sales data is in. How do you think this year has gone for Fixed Indexed Annuities?
Sheryl Moore: Are you kidding? I am absolutely thrilled about indexed annuity sales in 2012. Our third quarter, 2012 sales were greater than all other quarters in history, with the exception of third quarter, 2010. We are going to blow all records out of the water, come the end of this year. I am projecting that not only will fourth quarter close-out a record year, but that it should be a record-setting quarter as well. Not too bad considering this has been THE most challenging time to sell fixed and indexed annuities!
Matt Neuman: What trends do you see developing as we near 2013?
Sheryl Moore: First, there will continue to be a rising demand for indexed annuities due to continued market uncertainty and historical-low rates. For these same reasons, we will continue to see many new companies entering the indexed annuity market for the first time. Rider election for Guaranteed Lifetime Withdrawal Benefits (GLWBs) will continue their downward trend. As companies are forced to scale-back the attractiveness of these benefits, their popularity will decline. Lastly, there will be a continued increase in the development of new indexed crediting strategies.
Matt Neuman: Do you see any new carriers and products making a big impact in the marketplace? Why do you think that is?
Sheryl Moore: I have seen a few new companies making a splash in the indexed annuity market. Although I do not endorse any company or product, not mentioning Allstate, Pacific Life, and Security Benefit Life’s new products would be an oversight. Allstate’s captive distribution has benefited from their simple and straightforward product designs. Pacific Life is making inroads in the bank and wire house distributions with a relatively competitive GLWB. Security Benefit Life has caught the attention of independent insurance agents with another relatively competitive GLWB in addition to a new indexed annuity based on a proprietary index. Needless to say, the indexed annuity market isn’t lacking for diversity in distribution or product features today.
Matt Neuman: Sheryl, as you know, Advisors Excel is one of the only marketing companies with a selling agreement for the indexed annuities currently offered through Security Benefit Life’s independent agents. I noticed that the SBL Total Value Annuity and Secure Income Annuity are the top two best-selling indexed annuities for the third quarter – is that right?
Sheryl Moore: That’s right, Matt. The newer of the two products, TVA, was the top-selling indexed annuity this quarter. The Secure Income Annuity came-in a very close second-place according to AnnuitySpecs.com’s Indexed Sales & Market Report for the third quarter of 2012.
Matt Neuman: Do you see other carriers and products declining in market share? Why do you think that is?
Sheryl Moore: Nearly all companies and products in the indexed annuity market are losing market share as a whole. There are so many new companies entering this market due to declining fixed and variable annuity sales. In addition, the low-interest rate environment has sparked new product development, as it always does, resulting in a slew of new annuities.
Matt Neuman: Lastly, what product advice would you give financial advisors, as they decide which products to position in the future?
Sheryl Moore: My best product advice to financial advisors would be to make certain that you understand the needs, objectives, and goals of your prospect prior to making any recommendations. Ensure that YOU know the product like the back of your hand. Then, educate your prospect on the product, in addition to providing your rationale for suggesting it as a solution for them. It is far easier to grow your practice in this manner than to be in a perpetual state of conserving business. And don’t forget to CYA – COVER YOUR ANNUITIES!”
All in all, things are looking great for the fixed indexed annuity industry. Now more than ever, clients need your help and expertise in finding ways to protect their retirements. Take this opportunity to show your clients how you can help them realize their retirement goals! There are more product options and solutions than ever before to help you solve any of your prospects’ needs.
A big thanks to industry expert Sheryl Moore for her insights into 2012 and what to look forward to in our futures. If you’d like to stay connected with Sheryl, check out www..com (be sure to subscribe to the newsletter) or via Twitter @IndexedGirl.
Stay focused and Advise with Passion. MJN