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Archive for February 2015


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  • Royal Neighbors Launches Insurance Product Designed With Women In Mind

    {February 27th, 2015} by N/A

    (ROCK ISLAND, IL) February 25, 2015 – Royal Neighbors of America, one of the nation’s largest women-led life insurers, has launched the new, groundbreaking Promise Plus coverage. It is a whole life insurance product offering a Cancer Waiver of Premium Rider to benefit women in the event of a diagnosis of cervical, ovarian, or breast […]

    Here’s what the future of life insurance distribution might look like

    {February 27th, 2015} by Ed McCarthy

    After spending several hours online researching the amount and type of life insurance that fits her needs, the prospective buyer is ready to shop. She signs into Amazon.com’s life insurance site, answers a few questions and uploads the last six months’ data from her fitness monitor, which tracks multiple health indicators. A cloud-based underwriting algorithm […]

    5 retirement-planning items you should take care of now

    {February 27th, 2015} by Melody Juge

    I am amazed at how many people I meet who haven’t prepared properly for their retirement, a time of life when you will go without earned income — potentially for decades. Whether you are your own financial adviser, embarking on this project alone or you have procured the help of a professional adviser, there are […]

    Robert Benmosche, who led AIG in repaying bailout, dies at 70

    {February 27th, 2015} by Hugh Son and Zachary Tracer

    (Bloomberg) — Robert Benmosche, the combative former chief executive officer of American International Group Inc. who led the insurer, once the world’s largest, to repay a $182.3 billion taxpayer bailout, has died. He was 70. He died on Friday at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York following treatment for lung cancer, AIG said in […]

    The big picture on dual licenses

    {February 27th, 2015} by David Port

    For financial planner Jillian C. Nel, earning dual licenses to offer both insurance and securities was originally little more than a career stepping stone, the means to escape from behind an administrative desk into a full-fledged advisory position at the large broker-dealer that employed her at the time. “It was a matter of me needing […]

    Heard in the Halls: BLOG

    {February 27th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    [Linda Koco Interviews LIMRA Conference Attendees] Question: Will the independent agency system grow, stay where it is now, or decline in life and annuity production over the next five years? I think it will grow, but it will look different. The independent agent of yesterday came from the career companies. Some of that is still […]

    Internet domain ‘.insurance’ available later this year

    {February 26th, 2015} by IFAwebnews Staff

    The Internet domain “.insurance” should be available to to the industry late this year, according to an organization that has signed an agreement to operate the domain in a “highly restrictive manner with strict eligibility requirements designed to ensure that the space is used by verified insurance industry members.” The financial services-backed group, fTLD, submitted […]

    NAFA Membership Elects 2015 Board of Directors

    {February 26th, 2015} by PRWeb

    Washington, D.C. (PRWEB) February 25, 2015 The National Association for Fixed Annuities (NAFA) elected its 2015 board of directors at the association’s annual meeting. S. Christopher Johnson of National Western Life Insurance Company will assume the role of chair of the NAFA board in replacing Chip Anderson of CreativeOne, who assumes the responsibilities of past […]

    Sun Life Financial to ring New York, Toronto, and Philippine stock exchange bells on March 2 to celebrate its sesquicentennial

    {February 26th, 2015} by PR Newswire Association LLC

    WELLESLEY, MA and NEW YORK, NY, Feb. 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ – On March 2, Sun Life Financial will ring the opening bells at the New York, Toronto, and Philippine stock exchanges to celebrate the company’s sesquicentennial—its 150th birthday. Sun Life Financial’s corporate headquarters are in Toronto, with head offices in the U.S. and Hong Kong. […]

    Boomers’ unique spin on retirement housing

    {February 26th, 2015} by Mary Beth Franklin

    Over the past 60-plus years, the baby boom generation has left its indelible mark on all aspects of the U.S. economy and culture. Now, as boomers enter retirement, a study from Merrill Lynch and Age Wave suggests they have definite views about the role their homes will play in their retirement plans. “I think we’re […]

    Global Atlantic Financial Taps Former Managing Director of Morgan Stanley as Chief Risk Officer

    {February 26th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    HAMILTON, Bermuda – Bermuda’s Global Atlantic Financial Group Ltd. said it named Peter Cai as chief risk officer to boost risk management throughout the company. Cai has 15-plus years of experience in the financial services industry. Most recently, he was managing director at Morgan Stanley, where he led a global team responsible for measuring, stress […]

    8 ways people blow their life insurance medical exams

    {February 26th, 2015} by Barbara Marquand

    Editor’s note: This article first appeared on Insure.com and is reprinted here with their permission. Click here for the original post. There’s nothing your clients can do to erase evidence of a lifetime habit of cheeseburgers and cigarettes before a life insurance medical exam. But they can avoid mistakes that lead to false test results […]

    Lessons from the Robin Williams’ estate plan mess

    {February 26th, 2015} by Tom Nawrocki

    When Robin Williams took his own life last August, he appeared to have all his affairs in order. His estate plan was clear about what he intended to leave to each of his three children, as well as to his wife, to whom he had been married for just three years. But Susan Williams, Robin’s […]

    Allianz CEO: Geopolitical Tensions, Drop in Interest Rates Led to Lower Global Growth in 2014

    {February 26th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    MUNICH – Allianz S.E.’s 2014 net income increased 3.8% but geopolitical tensions, continued market volatility and a further decline in interest rates last year led to lower global economic growth than expected, according to its chief executive officer. Full-year net income attributed to shareholders increased €6.2 billion (US$6.9 billion). But fourth-quarter net income fell 2.9% […]

    66% Of Insurers Plan To Add Staff

    {February 26th, 2015} by Chris McMahon

    Demand for technology, claims and actuarial positions is skyrocketing — but those positions are the hardest to fill, according to The Jacobson and Ward Groups. Two-thirds of insurance companies intend to increase staff in 2015, according to the “Semi-Annual U.S. Insurance Labor Outlook Study,” conducted by recruiting firm The Jacobson Group and industry benchmarking firm […]

    How one financial firm successfully rebranded — and reached millions of consumers in the process

    {February 26th, 2015} by Jamie E. Green

    As Chief Marketing Officer at Voya Financial, Ann Glover presided over a massive rebranding effort when the company split from its parent, ING, last year. According to reports, the company allocated $150 million in marketing to support the rebrand — not a meek undertaking in a rapidly shifting financial services landscape. Unwilling to rest behind […]

    Insurance industry adds 13,900 jobs in January

    {February 26th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    Our industry may not have put hundreds of thousands of people into employment last month, but every job counts, especially since the industry is facing an aging workforce. The latest job report for January released by the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics last February 6, 2015 says that the industry added 13,900 jobs, a 0.55 […]

    Banks On The Hunt For RIAs

    {February 26th, 2015} by Margarida Correia

    Banks are on the prowl for RIA firms. As banks watch their interest income dwindle, they’re increasingly looking to bulk up their wealth management businesses in a bid to boost their fee-based revenue. For many, buying an RIA is the way to go, said Jeffrey Brand, a managing director at mergers and acquisitions firm Silver […]

    MassMutual Announces Record 2014 Financial Results

    {February 26th, 2015} by PR Newswire Association LLC

    SPRINGFIELD, Mass., Feb. 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ –Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual) today announced strong consolidated statutory financial results1 for 2014, including a substantial increase in earnings and net income, record sales in key businesses, and highest-ever levels of assets under management (AUM)2, statutory surplus and total adjusted capital. The company reported that, for the […]

    Survey: Americans Are Getting Better At Saving For Retirement

    {February 25th, 2015} by Patricia Sabatini, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    Feb. 24–Americans have been doing a better job lately stockpiling money for retirement, according to an annual survey by a consortium of consumer groups. The overall improvements, compared with a year ago, were small but nonetheless important, said Stephen Brobeck, executive director of the Consumer Federation of America. Two indicators were particularly encouraging, he said. […]

    Annuities Could Help Clients Boost Their Retirement Grades

    {February 25th, 2015} by Chris Bartolotta

    The American College recently conducted a quiz to determine consumer knowledge of retirement issues. Eighty percent of the respondents – all at or near retirement age and with at least $100,000 in investable assets – failed outright. Less than 1 percent received a grade of A minus or better. A household survey by the Federal […]

    More Seek Lifetime Income But Few Understand Annuities

    {February 25th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    The annuity puzzle continues. Although 84 percent of Americans consider it important to have a guaranteed monthly paycheck in retirement, only 14 percent have purchased an annuity that will ensure lifetime income. This is according to the TIAA-CREF 2015 Lifetime Income Survey released this month. In addition, although 46 percent of Americans say they are […]

    Carriers Tinker With Flexible Terms

    {February 25th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    In the face of stagnant sales brought about in part by low interest rates, several big-name insurance carriers have made changes to their term life insurance portfolios in hopes of sparking sales. Call it a big refresh. In the last nine months alone, Lincoln Financial Group, John Hancock, MetLife and Phoenix Insurance Cos. have announced […]

    Annuities a Puzzle to Most Boomers

    {February 25th, 2015} by Casey Dowd, The Boomer

    Earlier this month TIAA-CREF released their second annual “Lifetime Income” study which revealed that many Americans are generally interested in a guaranteed monthly income stream but are unfamiliar with annuities which could support their lifetime income options. “For many Americans, annuities are often unknown or misunderstood, which is unfortunate since they are the only way […]

    This is what it looks like to be an independent agent in 2015

    {February 24th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    What are some of the things that keep advisors up at night? There may be plenty of things to worry about in the industry — for example, new disrupting technologies and distribution methods — but Retirement Advisor’s annual Advisor Survey reveals that advisors are still most concerned about the usual: producing more leads and finding […]

    Deloitte Sounds Alarm on Insurance Industry Scrutiny

    {February 24th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – The insurance industry should get ready for national and international regulation, along with greater scrutiny of popular products such as annuities, according to a Deloitte & Touche report. Regulators far and wide are bearing down on insurers and advisors in “a trend which is expected to accelerate and add to rule-making and overlapping […]

    LIMRA: Total U.S. Annuity Sales Improve 3% In 2014

    {February 24th, 2015} by LIMRA

    WINDSOR, Conn., February 23, 2015—Total U.S. annuity sales in 2014 rose 3 percent to $235.8 billion, thanks to record annual sales in indexed and income annuities, according to LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute Fourth Quarter 2014 U.S. Annuity Sales Survey. “Despite interest rates falling nearly a percentage point in 2014, indexed annuities and income annuity sales […]

    FINRA Fires Up Fines with Focus on Elder Abuse

    {February 24th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – Fines imposed by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority on firms and individuals for alleged wrongdoing “increased significantly” in 2014 with a sharper focus on cases involving seniors and retirees, according to a new study. At the same time, the review found that for the second year in a row, the number of firms […]

    IUL Illustration Proposal Goes Up For Public Comment

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – A task force in charge of crafting new rules governing indexed universal life insurance (IUL) illustrations agreed to seek public comment on a proposal that would result in crediting rates in the 6-7 percent range and put limits on loan leveraging. This represents another step in the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ (NAIC) […]

    House Lawmakers Urge Fed Chairman to Draw Clear Distinctions Between Insurers, Banks on Capital Standards

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Jeff Jeffrey, Washington Bureau manager: jeff.jeffrey@ambest.com

    WASHINGTON – Two top lawmakers on the House subcommittee with jurisdiction over the insurance industry are calling on Federal Reserve Board Chairman Janet Yellen to ensure new capital standards for systemically important financial institutions are tailored to specific industries. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-Mo., who chairs the House Financial Services Committee’s Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance, […]

    Prudential Highlights 5 Behaviors That Impact Retirement Planning

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Business Wire

    NEWARK, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Prudential Retirement joins the annual America Saves Week campaign to help Americans recognize the five common human behaviors that can deter them from saving for retirement. Prudential Retirement is a business unit of Prudential Financial, Inc. (NYSE:PRU). “American workers are living longer, but most aren’t thinking about what it means to spend […]

    Obama tells DOL to move forward with fiduciary redraft

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Melanie Waddell

    President Barack Obama will speak Monday at AARP at 2 p.m. EST to officially say that he has given the Department of Labor the go ahead to move forward with the redraft of its rule to amend the definition of fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. Obama will say in his comments that […]

    Benefits Squeezed Tighter Than Agent Commissions

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    Who doesn’t love the phrase “managing expenses,” so long as you are the one conducting the expense management? But when carrier executives talk about expense management, look out. For agents, it’s a signal that leaner times lie ahead. For agents who haven’t yet felt the wrath of slimmer margins affecting carriers, perhaps they should prepare […]

    Deferred-income annuities grab spotlight from traditional variable annuities

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Darla Mercado

    Run-up of DIAs in recent years points to a new retirement income stream for clients The lowly deferred-income annuity is finally getting its moment in the sun, as well as in clients’ retirement income plans. Deferred-income annuities started as a variation of the single-premium immediate annuity (SPIA), using a similar concept: A client puts down […]

    Raft of new annuity products has broker-dealers scrambling to train reps

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Darla Mercado

    As new annuities gain in popularity, broker-dealers are getting reps up to speed on using them as part of a comprehensive retirement income plan A raft of new offerings and changing needs for retirement income are spurring broker-dealers to tweak their product training seminars for advisers. It wasn’t that long ago that variable annuities were […]

    Are caps and floors in IULs realistic? If so, why can’t I do it myself?

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Tom Martin

    We are often asked by our clients, “How can the insurance company afford such generous caps and floors in their indexed universal life policies?” Many insurance producers themselves may ponder the same question. We may even take it a step further and wonder, if the insurance company can do this in a life insurance policy, […]

    Number of Senior Workers Delaying Retirement Reaches New Post-Recession Low

    {February 23rd, 2015} by CareerBuilder

    53 percent of workers (age 60+) are currently delaying retirement, down from 66 percent in 2010 54 percent of workers (age 60+) say they will work part or full-time after retirement 54 percent of employers hired mature workers in 2014, up from 48 percent in 2013 Feb 19, 2015, 04:00 ET from CareerBuilder CHICAGO, Feb. […]

    Genworth: Looking At A ‘Multi-Step Restructuring’ Of Company

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Kody Leibowitz

    Lynchburg, VA – Some local jobs may be in jeopardy. Genworth Financial tells ABC 13 that they are looking at a multi-step restructuring. The Henrico County-based company announced it lost $760 million loss for the fourth quarter last year. Genworth has two sites in Lynchburg: one downtown, another on Albert Lankford Drive. “Some positions at […]

    NEW Informational Website for QLACs is launched

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Alternative Brokerage

    DES Moines, Iowa- Alternative Brokerage announces the first comprehensive website for QLACs (Qualified Longevity Annuity Contracts). www.QLACs.com provides one source for current articles, information, as well as new products and new carriers entering the marketplace. Also, for real time updates, follow us on Twitter: @QLACS The new QLAC regulations allow clients to defer up to […]

    Where Are All the Ladies in FinTech?

    {February 23rd, 2015} by Meredith Lepore

    Fintech (that’s financial technology) is a new, exciting industry that will make finance a whole lot more transparent. But when it comes to gender equality, it’s not looking good for this sector: Click HERE to read. A Financial News analysis of Dow Jones Venture Source and Factiva data published last week, revealed that the 20 […]

    Life Insurance Scam Targets Washington State Widows

    {February 22nd, 2015} by Nina Culver, The Spokesman-Review, Spokane, Wash

    Feb. 22–It seemed simple enough. Shortly after her husband of 46 years died earlier this month, Irene Schell got a phone call from a woman who informed her that her husband had a life insurance policy. But there was a catch. The policy was delinquent, the woman on the phone told her, and Schell would […]

    Insurers Healthy Despite Interest Rate Slam in 4Q Reports

    {February 20th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    Judging from the fourth quarter crop of earnings reports, insurance carriers are steaming mad at the low interest rate environment and some C-suite executives seemed particularly vehement about the difficult rate environment facing the industry. But why are rates still an issue? Aren’t they old news by now? Haven’t insurance managers learned to navigate the […]

    A different approach to recruiting: Lincoln Financial Network

    {February 20th, 2015} by Emily Zulz

    When it comes to advisor recruitment, Lincoln Financial Network may have a different approach than most. “We’re not going to go out and just recruit for purposes of recruiting,” says Chris Flint, head of Lincoln Financial Securities and senior vice president/head of Advisor & Acquisition Strategies for Lincoln Financial Network. Flint recently paid a visit […]

    10 ways to screw up when picking life insurance beneficiaries

    {February 20th, 2015} by Barbara Marquand

    Naming who should get the life insurance money after you die sounds simple, but designating beneficiaries can get tricky. Mistakes are common, financial advisers say — and they can be heartbreaking and expensive. When mistakes are made “you’re not creating problems for you,” says Keith Friedman, principal of FBO Strategies, an estate planning and insurance […]

    Northwestern Mutual achieves record revenue, assets and surplus

    {February 20th, 2015} by PR Newswire Association LLC

    MILWAUKEE, Feb. 19, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — As demand grows for Northwestern Mutual’s distinctive approach to providing financial guidance, the company today announced it has achieved record levels of revenue, assets and surplus, as well as a record dividend payout to policyowners for 2015 expected to exceed $5.5 billion. “We continue to grow and evolve, yet […]

    11 life insurance logos we like

    {February 20th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    Let’s play word association; I’ll will write a word and you think about an image. Soda. What logo came to your mind? Click HERE to read….

    Observers Praise Former Hartford CEO for Vision, Leadership That Saved Company

    {February 20th, 2015} by Michael Buck, senior associate editor, BestWeek: Michael.Buck@ambest.com

    HARTFORD, Conn. – When Liam McGee took over as the head of Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. in 2009, the company was in turmoil. It was the midst of the financial crisis and the company’s fate was in the air, according to John Nadel, an analyst with Sterne Agee Group Inc. who has followed Hartford […]

    FINRA’s 5 biggest fine categories in 2014

    {February 20th, 2015} by Melanie Waddell

    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) imposed approximately $135 million in fines in 2014, a whopping 125 percent jump from the $60 million in fines the regulator assessed in 2013, and the largest amount of fines since the financial crisis in 2008, according to a just-released analysis by the law firm Sutherland Asbill & Brennan. […]

    Man Accused Of Killing Texas Woman In Insurance Scam

    {February 20th, 2015} by Associated Press

    COLLEYVILLE, Texas (AP) — A man arrested in Florida has been charged in the Texas death of a 72-year-old housekeeper who had a $1 million insurance policy issued without her knowledge. Colleyville police say 26-year-old Bernard Gorman faces a murder warrant in the scam to collect the benefits. Polk County, Florida, jail records show Gorman […]

    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 […]

    A milestone for fixed index annuities

    {February 18th, 2015} by Jim Poolman

    Despite the economic growth that characterized most of the 1990s, economic volatility darkened the bond and stock markets in 1994. Traditional financial options suddenly looked less dependable and consumers were hungry for a product that provided a certain degree of growth, but retained its principal in times of economic turbulence. This volatility led to the […]

    Fixed Indexed Annuities Commemorate 20 Years

    {February 18th, 2015} by PR Newswire Association LLC

    American Retirement Portfolios Stronger After Two Decades of FIAs DES MOINES, Iowa, Feb. 17, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Fixed Index Annuities (FIAs) observed the 20th anniversary of their introduction to the marketplace today. On Feb. 15th, 1995, FIAs were first announced to consumers as a key component for helping plan a secure, dependable source of income […]

    Man Who Stole From Elderly Widows Is Sentenced

    {February 18th, 2015} by The New Hampshire Union Leader, Manchester

    Feb. 18–Frederick V. McMenimen III, 53, of Bow, was sentenced Feb. 11 in U.S. District Court to serve three-and-a-half years in federal prison and pay restitution of more than $1.44 million to three individuals and an insurance company. McMenimen pleaded guilty in November to mail fraud, money laundering and federal income tax evasion in connection […]

    Why The Search For Alternatives Is Good For FIAs

    {February 18th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    The increasing interest in alternative retirement plans is opening doors for greater use of fixed index annuities (FIAs). That’s according to Jim Poolman, the executive director of the Indexed Annuity Leadership Council (IALC), who pointed to use of FIAs in teachers’ defined contribution plans, such as 403(b)s, as an example. Two of IALC’s member companies […]

    Liam McGee, CEO who led Hartford through bailout, dies at 60

    {February 17th, 2015} by Zachary Tracer, Bloomberg

    (Bloomberg) — Liam McGee, an Irish-born banker and insurance executive who guided Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. through a taxpayer bailout and shored up the company’s finances, has died. He was 60. McGee died Feb. 13 after a two-year battle with cancer, Hartford said Monday in a statement. He’d relocated with his family from Connecticut […]

    The Hartford Mourns The Loss Of Former Chairman, President And CEO

    {February 17th, 2015} by Business Wire

    HARTFORD, Conn.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– The Hartford mourns the loss of Liam E. McGee, the company’s former Chairman, President and CEO.Mr. McGee passed peacefully the night of February 13, following a courageous battle with cancer. “We are deeply saddened by the passing of our colleague and dear friend, Liam McGee, and we extend our heartfelt condolences to […]

    Genworth Financial Outlines Restructuring Plan, Posts 4Q Loss of $760M on Older Long-Term Care Policies

    {February 17th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    RICHMOND, Va. – Genworth Financial Inc. said it’s undertaking a multistep restructuring plan targeting cash savings of more than $100 million pretax over the next two years after it posted a fourth-quarter 2014 net loss of $760 million on older blocks of acquired long-term care insurance policies. The final quarter of 2014 included a GAAP […]

    5 fixed annuity questions you should be asking

    {February 17th, 2015} by Christopher Bartolotta, christopher.bartolotta@m3fin.com

    Last time, we talked about common questions that advisors and clients ask that have their basis in misleading claims about fixed annuities. This time we’ll take a look at what questions you should be asking instead — the ones that get to the heart of what an annuity can do for your client. Click HERE […]

    MetLife gets back in the variable-annuity-with-living-benefits game

    {February 17th, 2015} by Darla Mercado

    Longtime variable annuity player MetLife Inc. is stepping off the sidelines and getting back into the game as it launches a new living benefit rider. The New York-based insurer will release a new guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefit rider, called FlexChoice, for sale on Saturday, Feb. 14. MetLife filed the contract with the Securities and Exchange […]

    The Highs And Lows Of 4Q Earnings

    {February 17th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    Front row seats to Genworth Financial’s earnings call was the hot ticket in this batch of earnings releases as the company announced that the completion of its active life margin review was “substantially complete.” The findings “positive in the aggregate,” in the words of president and CEO Thomas McInerney, were good and bad, but not […]

    Some Carriers Beat The 4Q Blues Some Carriers Beat The 4Q Blues

    {February 17th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    As some of the nation’s largest life and retirement carriers blamed lower interest rates and currency fluctuations for poor quarterly earnings performance, companies with deep roots in distribution and strong ties to the middle market performed well. Primerica, a distributor of term insurance and investment products, reported fourth quarter net income of $45.5 million, an […]

    AIG: Interest Rates To Blame In Quarterly Profit Loss

    {February 17th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – American International Group said profit declined 67 percent in the last quarter related to a year ago because it shored up reserves and also because results declined significantly at its life and retirement units. Operating results in the newly formed consumer business unit fell 21 percent to $923 million because of the drop […]

    American Equity Reports Fourth Quarter 2014 Results

    {February 17th, 2015} by Business Wire

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa–(BUSINESS WIRE)–American Equity Investment Life Holding Company (NYSE: AEL), a leading issuer of fixed index annuities, today reported fourth quarter 2014 net income of $31.2 million, or $0.39 per diluted common share, compared to fourth quarter 2013 net income of $51.0 million, or $0.64 per diluted common share. Non-GAAP operating income1 for […]

    Zurich CEO Says More Work Needed in Turnaround Businesses as Group Posts 3% Drop in 2014 After-Tax Net Profit

    {February 17th, 2015} by Robert O'Connor, London editor: Robert.OConnor@ambest.com

    ZURICH – Zurich Insurance Group Ltd.’s chief executive officer expressed dissatisfaction with the group’s 3% fall in 2014 after-tax net profit to US$3.9 billion, and pointed to further work needed in following its strategic plan. After-tax profit was US$4.02 billion in the previous year. Business operating profit at the multiline insurer was down by 1% […]

    MetLife CEO: Company Has De-Risked US Retail Business; Federal Reserve Is Now One of Its Regulators

    {February 17th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    NEW YORK – As MetLife Inc.’s fourth-quarter and year-end 2014 profits increased, its chief executive officer said the company has de-risked its U.S. retail business while the Federal Reserve is now one of its regulators. Fourth-quarter net income increased to nearly $1.5 billion from $877 million. Net income included $120 million in derivative gains, after-tax, […]

    America’s Retirement Accounts Heavily Invested In Oil, Gas

    {February 16th, 2015} by Allison Dyer Bluemel, Greeley Tribune, Colo.

    Feb. 13–The well-being of the oil and gas industry may affect the average American beyond what we pay at the gas pump. Many Americans may only have to look as far as their 401(k)s. Non-insider individuals hold 65.5 percent of the industry’s stock weaved into their 401k retirement plans, according to a 2014 study conducted […]

    MetLife Back In GLWB Market

    {February 16th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    MetLife has decided it’s time to get back into the guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefit (GLWB) market for variable annuities (VAs). The carrier had pulled its older GLWB rider from its core VA nearly four years ago as part of a derisking strategy, said Elizabeth Forget, executive vice president-retail retirement and wealth solutions.  Now, MetLife wants […]

    Accused Of Bilking Elderly Client, Man Withdraws Guilty Plea

    {February 14th, 2015} by Konstantine Fekos, The Meadville Tribune, Pa.

    Feb. 14–A former financial adviser accused of stealing money from an elderly Meadville woman withdrew his guilty plea Friday morning before Crawford County Court of Common Pleas President Judge Anthony Vardaro. David E.A. Seagren, 70, originally pleaded guilty in November last year, facing up to 62 years in prison and $140,000 in fines on six […]

    AIG’s Hancock: 2014 ‘a Year of Transition’ as Net Income Falls 17%

    {February 13th, 2015} by Michael Buck, senior associate editor, BestWeek: Michael.Buck@ambest.com

    NEW YORK – American International Group Inc. saw its fourth-quarter net income fall to $655 million, from $2 billion in the prior-year period, and its full-year net income fall 17.5% to $7.5 billion, the company said in a statement. Reported net income included an after-tax loss on extinguishment of debt of $824 million associated with […]

    Voya Offers A GLWB Option In 401(k) Plan

    {February 13th, 2015} by Linda Koco

    If you think that guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefits (GLWBs) are giving up the ghost, they’re not. The Retirement Solutions business of Voya Financial said it has started offering a multi-insurer GLWB option on its recordkeeping platform for large 401(k) funds. As with GLWBs in the retail annuity world, this product guarantees guaranteed lifetime income for […]

    Ranked! Here are 2015’s top schools for insurance degrees

    {February 13th, 2015} by Melissa Hillebrand

    As of 2014, the average age of an insurance agent in the United States is 59, according to global management consulting firm McKinsey & Co., and one-fourth of the industry’s employees will retire by 2018. And the widening talent gap isn’t exclusive to agents — it’s prevalent in other industry segments such as risk management […]

    John Hancock Insurance Launches New Term Life Insurance Product

    {February 13th, 2015} by PR Newswire Association LLC

    BOSTON, Feb. 11, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — John Hancock Insurance today announced it has re-engineered its term life insurance, providing more consumers with an affordable solution to help with their big financial decisions. With significantly lower premiums in core market segments and face amounts beginning at $250,000, John Hancock Term is a cost-effective insurance solution to […]

    Nationwide Delivered Consistent Growth In 2014

    {February 13th, 2015} by Business Wire

    COLUMBUS, Ohio–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Nationwide maintained its strong market position and growth momentum in 2014. Nationwide today reported total operating revenue of $25.3 billion1 for 2014, up more than 6 percent over 2013. Year-end results reflect balanced revenue growth and performance across most major product lines in the company’s diverse portfolio. Revenue was driven by business […]

    Delivering The Deep Dive Into Price Comparisons

    {February 13th, 2015} by Ron Sussman, ron.sussman@innfeedback.com.

    We live in an age of instant gratification. If you’re looking to buy anything from a car, to a television to dish soap, you are a few keystrokes and a click away from an in-depth comparison of options and prices. It’s reasonable, too, for our policyholder clients to expect this exhaustiveness when their agent promises […]

    Voya Financial Announces Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2014 Results

    {February 13th, 2015} by PR Newswire

    NEW YORK, Feb. 11, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA) today reported financial results for the fourth quarter and full year 2014: Fourth quarter 2014 after-tax operating earnings1,2 of $245 million, or $0.99 per diluted share, compared with $198 million, or $0.75 per diluted share in the fourth quarter of 20133. The following […]

    Voya jumps into 401(k) annuity game

    {February 13th, 2015} by Marlene Y. Satter

    With guaranteed lifetime income getting all kinds of attention nowadays, it’s only natural that increasingly, plan providers should jump aboard. The addition of Voya Financial to the parade, then, is not surprising. Voya’s Retirement Solutions business on Tuesday announced it was introducing its Lifetime Income Strategy, which it describes as “a new retirement income investment […]

    Merrill Lynch, USC Collaborate On Longevity Training For Advisors

    {February 13th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    With the nation aging rapidly and the booming market in serving the financial needs of retirees and the elderly, Merrill Lynch and University of Southern California’s Leonard Davis School of Gerontology have announced a new training program for financial advisors The initiative is known as the Merrill Lynch Longevity Training Program. It will offer advisors […]

    NAIC Nears IUL Illustration Compromise

    {February 13th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) appears to be on track to adopt new rules governing the illustrations that insurers and agents can use when selling indexed universal life insurance by July. At a conference call last week, the NAIC’s Life Actuarial Task Force (LATF) said it plans to release an exposure […]

    Securian’s 2014 Results Show Double-Digit Growth across Key Metrics

    {February 13th, 2015} by Business Wire

    ST. PAUL, Minn.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Securian Financial Group generated excellent financial results in 2014, driven by strong performance in its diverse insurance businesses, growing contributions from key subsidiaries and strong risk management. “2014 exceeded expectations,” said Chris Hilger, president and CEO, Securian Financial Group. “We delivered smart growth by following our strategic plan, building on our strengths […]

    We’re living longer — get ready to pay for it

    {February 13th, 2015} by Gil Weinreich

    Attention advisors: A mostly unheralded change in actuarial tables suggests the need to plan for longer retirements for your clients and could also make a delay in claiming benefits advantageous for some clients. That is the upshot of a recent client communication from ERISA attorney Marcia Wagner of the Wagner Law Group. The Boston-based firm’s […]

    Genworth posts net loss

    {February 13th, 2015} by Allison Bell

    Genworth Financial Inc. (NYSE:GNW) has taken a $478 million charge in connection with a previously announced effort to increase reserves for margins for active long-term care insurance (LTCI) lives. The charge contributed to the company reporting a $760 million net loss on $2.4 billion in revenue for the fourth quarter of 2014. That compares with […]

    ACLI Makes Annuity Case to Feds

    {February 13th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – The American Council of Life Insurers briefed members of a Treasury Department insurance advisory committee Tuesday on the importance of annuities as a component of the retirement portfolio of Americans. The presentation by two ACLI officials, Alane Dent, vice president, federal relations, taxes & retirement security, and Jim Szostek, vice president, taxes and […]

    Social Media Is Dead: Financial Social Media Evolves

    {February 13th, 2015} by Amy McIlwain

    Social media is dead. “Wait, what?! My company just got a Facebook page.”  Don’t panic. Social media 1.0 is dead because it’s evolving into a new form. There’s a transformation underway that’s moving social toward a more integrated digital strategy as traditional paid, owned and earned media channels converge. While the 1.0 version may be dead, social is not going away. Far from it. Social media is moving from […]

    Fidelity Finds ‘Personal Finance’ May Be Too ‘Personal’ To Discuss

    {February 12th, 2015} by Business Wire

    BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)– A new study by Fidelity Investments® found that women overwhelmingly want to learn more about financial planning (92 percent) and get more involved in their finances within the next year (83 percent). However, open conversations about money remain rare. Even among family and friends, eight in 10 women confess they have refrained at […]

    On Global Stage, U.S. Holds Steady In Retirement Security

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

    For the third consecutive year, the U.S. came in 19th among 150 nations for retirement security, according to an annual survey of global retirement security. European nations, with their high levels of social benefits and universal health care, were represented in abundance in the Top-20 group, which this year included newcomer Japan, the Natixis Global […]

    New York Life to hire more than 3,600 financial representatives in 2015 with special focus on women and cultural markets

    {February 12th, 2015} by New York Life

    Company has hired more than 3,200 financial representatives annually since 2007. Growing agent force produces record fourth quarter sales. NEW YORK, February 12, 2015—New York Life announced that the company hired 3,680 full-time agents last year, continuing its strong track record of hiring in recent years. The company has grown its active agent force by […]

    7 social media tips for insurance pros

    {February 12th, 2015} by Yasmin Zarabi

    Many insurance professionals initially perceived social media as a risky new channel due to the complications of regulatory requirements on communications with the public and advertising. That said, the benefits of going social, allowing agents to go where their customers are and reaching the right audience at the right moment, have proven to far outweigh […]

    ZIP Code Analysis Of Annuity Markets Reveals Surprises, Opportunities

    {February 12th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    A common question that big data scientist Bill Poll is getting these days is, “Where should I move my annuity practice?” The questions are coming from annuity professionals who have reached certain event-based decision points about their practices, said Poll, who is a managing partner and co-founder of Information Asset Partners (IAP), Metuchen, N.J. The […]

    MetLife profit climbs 68% to $1.52 billion on growth in U.S.

    {February 12th, 2015} by Zachary Tracer, Bloomberg

    (Bloomberg) — MetLife Inc., the largest U.S. life insurer, said profit climbed 68 percent in the fourth quarter as results improve in the company’s home country. Net income rose to $1.52 billion from $908 million a year earlier, the New York-based insurer said Wednesday in a statement. Operating profit, which excludes some investing results, was […]

    A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Aegon N.V.’s U.S. Subsidiaries

    {February 12th, 2015} by Best's News Service

    Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “aa-” of the U.S. life/health subsidiaries of Aegon N.V. (Aegon) (Netherlands) [NYSE: AEG]. Aegon’s U.S. life/health companies are collectively referred to as Aegon USA Group (Aegon USA). Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the FSR […]

    AIG Reports 4Q Net Income Of $655 Million

    {February 12th, 2015} by Business Wire

    NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)– American International Group, Inc. (NYSE:AIG) today reported net income attributable to AIG of $655 million, or $0.46 per diluted share, for the quarter ended December 31, 2014, compared to $2.0 billion, or $1.34 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of 2013. Full year 2014 net income attributable to AIG was $7.5 […]

    MetLife’s 4Q Profit Jumps to $1.5B on Derivative Gains on Falling Interest Rates, Weakening Foreign Currency

    {February 11th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    NEW YORK – MetLife Inc.’s fourth-quarter net income increased to nearly $1.5 billion from $877 million the same period a year ago. Net income in the final quarter of 2014 included $120 million in derivative gains, after-tax, reflecting falling interest rates and the weakening of foreign currencies against the dollar, MetLife said. Total operating revenues, […]

    O’Brien: Let’s Inflate the QLAC Market

    {February 11th, 2015} by Kim O'Brien, kobrien@innfeedback.com

    Some reporters have mis-characterized the fixed annuity industry’s interest in removing the exclusion of fixed index annuities from the IRS Rule regarding required minimum distributions (RMD). One writer commented on an annuity association’s most recent submission to Treasury by suggesting it was a “Hail Mary.” Before being a cheerleader for annuities, I led cheers for […]

    Why sorting clients by age, gender is a mistake

    {February 11th, 2015} by Danielle Andrus

    The best way to segment clients in order to predict their behavior requires a look beyond the obvious. Advisors looking for ways to deepen their relationships with clients should consider using behavioral segmentation rather than demographic to help focus on the needs and preferences of individual clients. Instead of focusing on more obvious markers — […]

    Securian Had Double-Digit Growth In 2014

    {February 11th, 2015} by Securian Financial Group

    St. Paul, Minnesota – Securian Financial Group generated excellent financial results in 2014, driven by strong performance in its diverse insurance businesses, growing contributions from key subsidiaries and strong risk management. “2014 exceeded expectations,” said Chris Hilger, president and CEO, Securian Financial Group. “We delivered smart growth by following our strategic plan, building on our […]

    Voya Financial’s 2014 Year-End Net Income More Than Triples

    {February 11th, 2015} by Jeff Jeffrey, Washington Bureau manager: jeff.jeffrey@ambest.com

    NEW YORK – Voya Financial Inc. reported a fourth-quarter net income of $1.4 billion, marking a 154.6% increase over the $548 million the company earned during the same period of 2013. For all of 2014, Voya reported a net income of $2.3 billion. The company’s 2014 earnings were up 282.7% over its 2013 earnings. Voya […]

    CNO Financial 4Q Net Drops 21% in Part From Change in Agent Deferred Compensation Plan Liability

    {February 11th, 2015} by Thomas Harman, associate editor, BestWeek: Tom.Harman@ambest.com

    CARMEL, Ind. – CNO Financial Group’s fourth-quarter 2014 net income fell 21% to $83.9 million, while full-year net income fell 89% to $51.4 million. Net income and operating earnings reflect an unfavorable after-tax, mark-to-market change in the agent deferred compensation plan liability, which was impacted by the use of a new mortality table and the […]

    Trial Testimony Focuses On Deaths And Life-Insurance Payouts

    {February 11th, 2015} by Tim Potter, The Wichita Eagle

    Feb. 10–One by one, people who lived and moved with Daniel Perez from state to state over the years died of what appeared to be accidents, resulting in large life insurance payouts, according to testimony Tuesday. One of those who died was Patricia Hughes, a 26-year-old wife and mother. Her death in 2003, in what […]

    Happy 20th, FIAs!

    {February 10th, 2015} by Steven Morelli, steve.morelli@innfeedback.com.

    Fixed index annuities want what any 20-year-old desires: Acceptance and respect. FIAs still carry that bad-boy taint from years back, from, you know, the experimenting years. Yeah, things got a little complicated back then. Maybe they said some things they shouldn’t have. But we all grow up, right? We do, but many of us also […]

    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 […]

    The 8 biggest announcements from life and health insurers this week

    {February 10th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    Paradigm shift news roundup: Allianz, Northwestern Mutual, American Equity, AIG, Penn Mutual, Sun Life, Unum, Prudential The #AllianzBirdies Challenge came to a close Feb. 8 with thousands of people putting #AllianzBirdies in their social media posts during the month-long campaign that ended at the Allianz Championship in Boca Raton, Fla. Allianz will donate $50,000 to […]

    Interest Rate Declines ‘Not Helpful,’ Prudential CFO Says

    {February 10th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    Every so often a nugget of an understatement glimmers from the dense jargon of earnings conferences like a speck of tarnished gold in a prospector’s pan. Last week was such a week, when Robert Michael Falzon, Prudential’s chief financial officer and executive vice president, told an analyst in a conference call that lower interest rates […]

    Women and retirement realities [infographic]

    {February 10th, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    With the jobs report released today and the positive numbers indicating that interest rates might be increasing in the coming months, how will this affect women who are going to retire in the near and longer in the future? There is still a retirement and wage gap between women and men and, although it’s closing, […]

    The top 5 priorities for life insurers in 2015

    {February 10th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch, whersch@SummitProNets.com

    In coming years, expect to see more simplified and consumer-friendly products, including annuities tailored to young workers looking to build a nest egg. Life insurers’ back-office operations will also be better integrated, availing advisors of more cross-selling opportunities across product lines. These developments are in the offing if carriers follow the recommendations of a new […]

    Securian’s 2014 Results Show Double-Digit Growth Across Key Metrics

    {February 10th, 2015} by Business Wire

    Securian Financial Group generated excellent financial results in 2014, driven by strong performance in its diverse insurance businesses, growing contributions from key subsidiaries and strong risk management. “2014 exceeded expectations,” said Chris Hilger, president and CEO, Securian Financial Group. “We delivered smart growth by following our strategic plan, building on our strengths and investing in […]

    Declining marriage rates present a planning conundrum for long-term couples

    {February 10th, 2015} by Darla Mercado

    Fewer young people are taking the trip down the aisle, opting instead to cohabitate, which is giving rise to a variety of unique planning concerns. Data from the Pew Research Center showed that in 2012, 20% of American adults age 25 and over — some 42 million people — had never been married. That compares […]

    This is the No. 1 country in the world for retirement security

    {February 10th, 2015} by Emily Holbrook

    The Swiss have a lot to be thankful for. They are surrounded by beautiful pastoral lands, clean air, a good education system and retirement security that ranks better than all other countries in the world. That’s according to the 2015 Natixis Global Retirement Security Index.  Click HERE to read…

    Every young adviser needs a successful mentor

    {February 10th, 2015} by Grant Webster

    Multiple benefits stem from such a relationship, and all you have to do is ask My first seven years as an adviser have been a rollercoaster ride, with many more ups than downs. The learning curve to becoming an adviser is steep and the skills needed to succeed in this industry are vast and ever-changing. […]

    Jobs Report: US Insurance Industry Posts Decade-High 13,900 Job-Increase in January

    {February 10th, 2015} by Jeff Jeffrey, Washington Bureau manager: jeff.jeffrey@ambest.com

    WASHINGTON – The U.S. insurance industry posted a 10-year high job increase in January, adding 13,900 jobs, according figures released Feb. 6 by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The 0.55% seasonally adjusted increase marked a sizable jump over the job growth the industry saw in December. According to updated figures released by BLS, the industry […]

    Fidelity & Guaranty Life Posts 1Q Fiscal 2015 Results

    {February 10th, 2015} by Proquest LLC

    Fidelity & Guaranty Life reported net income of $14.1 million or $0.24 per diluted common share for the first quarter of fiscal 2015 ended on December 31, 2014. According to a release from the Company, it reported adjusted operating income of $27.1 million, or $0.46 per diluted share, in the fiscal first quarter, compared to […]

    NAIC Taps Missouri Director Huff as New President-Elect

    {February 10th, 2015} by Thomas Harman, associate editor, BestWeek: Tom.Harman@ambest.com

    WASHINGTON – Missouri Insurance Director John Huff has been elected as the new National Association of Insurance Commissioners president-elect during a plenary session vote. Huff fills the president-elect post that was vacated when new Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf decided to replace Insurance Commissioner Michael Consedine. Teresa Miller was appointed as his replacement (Best’s News Service, […]

    Phoenix Restatement of 2013 Results to Raise Net

    {February 10th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    HARTFORD, Conn. – Phoenix Cos. Inc. said it will restate prior-period financial statements for the fourth quarter and year-end 2013, and the second quarter of last year as it identified errors determined to be “material.” For the fourth quarter and year-ended Dec. 31, 2013, the restatement will correct errors relating to review of its annual […]

    Lincoln Financial Group Issues 4Q and Full Year 2014 Results

    {February 10th, 2015} by Proquest LLC

    Lincoln Financial Group has reported net income for the fourth quarter of 2014 of $348 million, or $1.32 per diluted share available to common stockholders, compared to net income in the fourth quarter of 2013 of $351 million, or $1.29 per diluted share available to common stockholders. In a release on February 5, the company […]

    NAIC Selects New President-Elect

    {February 10th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – John M. Huff, Missouri insurance commissioner, has been chosen president-elect by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. He succeeds Michael Consedine, who announced Jan. 13 that he had was stepping aside as Pennsylvania insurance commissioner to allow incoming Gov. Tom Wolf to name his own commissioner. Huff bested Sharon Clark, Kentucky insurance commissioner, […]

    NAIC Nears IUL Illustration Path

    {February 10th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON –The illustrations that insurers and advisors can use when selling indexed universal life (IUL) insurance continue to be the subject of discussion by a National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) task force. Its continuing effort to craft regulations that all interested parties can live with in regard to these illustrations will be the subject […]

    American Equity Broadens Product Portfolio

    {February 10th, 2015} by Business Wire

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa–(BUSINESS WIRE)– American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company, a leading underwriter of index and fixed rate annuities, announced the addition of a new Fixed Indexed Annuity Series to its competitive portfolio. These new products, the Choice Series, add to the Company’s robust annuity product line, which has established American Equity as one […]

    These are Americans’ top 7 income sources

    {February 10th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch, whersch@SummitProNets.com

    In 2012, U.S. taxpayers received $612 billion from pensions and annuities, plus $231 billion from individual retirement accounts, new research shows. The Tax Foundation unveils this finding in a survey of sources of income in 2012, as reported by taxpayers on lines 7 to 22 of their 2012 Form 1040. The report’s authors undertook the […]

    The Market Is Watching Genworth

    {February 10th, 2015} by Cyril Tuohy, cyril.tuohy@innfeedback.com

    The market is watching Genworth Financial and hoping for some good news after a disastrous third quarter. Recall that on Thursday, Nov. 6, the company’s shares plunged nearly 38 percent to below $9 a share from $14 a share the day before. The stock hasn’t recovered since the company missed expectations after it announced an […]

    Advisors must better serve women, social media-savvy millennials

    {February 9th, 2015} by Warren S. Hersch, whersch@SummitProNets.com

    Women hold more than $5 trillion in investable assets and more than 90 percent of them manage home finances at some point in their lives. Yet women continue to be underserved by a financial services community that remains dominated by men and is male-centric in its outlook. That’s the judgement of Sallie Krawcheck, a former […]

    Positioning an indexed annuity vs. a CD: BLOG

    {February 9th, 2015} by Jason Caudill

    By now, I think it’s safe to say we’re all aware CD rates continue to sit at all-time lows. According to Bankrate.com, the average five-year CD has an interest rate of 0.79 percent. For retirees who are using the interest from a CD as income, this is very unfortunate. Through no fault of their own, […]

    Is industry jargon killing sales?

    {February 9th, 2015} by Dan Cook

    Is industry jargon killing life insurance sales opportunities? LIMRA fears that the answer is yes. LIMRA partnered with Maddock Douglas to dig into why so many people — an estimated 18.7 million —say they value life insurance but wind up not purchasing any. Ineffective communications popped up as the primary suspect. The language sales people […]

    More Families Bringing The Generations Under One Roof

    {February 8th, 2015} by Tim Grant, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    Feb. 08–At 80 years old, Jack Beiber loves having his family back under one roof. His two grown daughters help buy groceries and cook meals. His two granddaughters — ages 15 and 13 — and a 27-year-old grandson are responsible for household chores such as dishes and taking out the trash. With all those relatives […]

    Advisors Urged To Recognize ‘Red Flags’ Of Senior Exploitation

    {February 6th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    Financial professionals may be among the first to recognize when older clients start showing signs of diminished capacity as well as the “red flags of financial exploitation,” according to Rick A. Fleming. Yet these professionals often feel limited in their ability to protect their clients, the federal official told the American Retirement Initiative Winter Summit […]

    New York Leery Of Principles-Based Reserving

    {February 6th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – New York regulators continue to counter pressure from industry officials and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners to adopt a principles-based reserving (PBR) approach to universal life insurance policies with secondary guarantees (ULSG). Benjamin Lawsky, New York state Superintendent of Financial Services, wants to extend his formulaic approach to ULSGs, which are backed […]

    Study: Ineffective communication limits life insurance sales

    {February 6th, 2015} by LIMRA

    Life insurance companies may be limiting their sales potential by using words and images that do not resonate with consumers and often confuse them, according to a new joint study by LIMRA and Maddock Douglas. “We’re all familiar with the philosophical problem about a tree falling in the forest and the question about whether it […]

    Advisors Urged To Recognize ‘Red Flags’ Of Senior Exploitation

    {February 6th, 2015} by Linda Koco, linda.koco@innfeedback.com

    Financial professionals may be among the first to recognize when older clients start showing signs of diminished capacity as well as the “red flags of financial exploitation,” according to Rick A. Fleming. Yet these professionals often feel limited in their ability to protect their clients, the federal official told the American Retirement Initiative Winter Summit […]

    A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Ameritas Life Insurance Corp. and Subsidiary

    {February 6th, 2015} by Best's News Service

    Oldwick – A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A (Excellent) and the issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “a+” of Ameritas Life Insurance Corp. (Ameritas Life) (Lincoln, NE) and Ameritas Life Insurance Corp. of New York (Ameritas NY) (New York, NY). These insurance entities comprise the life/health operations of Ameritas Mutual Holding […]

    A.M. Best Revises Outlook to Negative for Woodmen of the World Life Insurance Society

    {February 6th, 2015} by A. M. Best

    Oldwick – A.M. Best has revised the outlook to negative from stable and affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A+ (Superior) and the issuer credit rating (ICR) of “aa-” for Woodmen of the World Life Insurance Society (Woodmen) (Omaha, NE), which is also known as Omaha Woodmen Life Insurance Society in certain states. The […]

    Magic Johnson gives advice to TDAI advisors

    {February 6th, 2015} by James J. Green

    Magic Johnson charmed the audience last Friday at TD Ameritrade Institutional’s annual conference in San Diego. He first called on the attendees to “please help out as many professional athletes and entertainers” that they could, counseling them not to “spend more than you make.” He joked that he wished he could have attended “this conference […]

    Regulators Fine Iowa Man For Securities Trading Violations

    {February 5th, 2015} by Associated Press

    LAKE MILLS, Iowa (AP) — A Lake Mills man accused of trading securities without a license has been fined $100,000 and ordered to make restitution of more than $454,000. The Mason City Globe Gazette reports (http://bit.ly/1KumMVg) that Randall Finer was cited by the Iowa Insurance Division for dealing unregistered securities, being an unregistered agent, making […]

    Senator says advisers need more protection in reporting elder financial abuse

    {February 5th, 2015} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    Federal privacy laws should be clarified to protect financial advisers who tell authorities about suspected financial exploitation of the elderly, a Senate leader on senior issues said Wednesday. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, chairwoman of the Senate Aging Committee, said giving safe harbor to financial firms would help address the growing problem of elder financial abuse. […]

    The ethical case for company-owned life insurance

    {February 5th, 2015} by John Sullivan

    It’s an old observation but still apropos; truth in advertising would dictate we call it death insurance, not life insurance. You’re insuring against the unexpected and unwarranted onset of death. Maybe an annuity could really be called life insurance, since it’s attempting to ensure against living too long—or rather outliving one’s financial resources. Click here […]

    Leading Index Annuity Provider Announces the Choice Series

    {February 5th, 2015} by Heather Gierstorf

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Feb. 5, 2015– American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company, a leading underwriter of index and fixed rate annuities, announced the addition of a new Fixed Indexed Annuity Series to its competitive portfolio. These new products, the Choice Series, add to the Company’s robust annuity product line, which has established American Equity […]

    Jumping on the FIA Birthday Bandwagon

    {February 5th, 2015} by Cailie Currin

    There has been a small flurry of publicity around the 20th birthday of fixed indexed annuities. (e.g., InsuranceNewsNet, February 2015, p. 6 Editorial, “Happy 20th Birthday Indexed Annuities!”  and “Fixed Indexed Annuities Celebrate 20 Years”) I read the first in this list, Mr. Morelli’s editorial, yesterday. The lead is that “Fixed index annuities want what […]

    Buffett Doesn’t Expect Interest Rates To Rise Soon

    {February 5th, 2015} by Associated Press

    OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Billionaire Warren Buffett says he doesn’t expect the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates this year because of the impact it would have on the both the U.S. and world economies. The economies in Europe and Asia are struggling and a hike in U.S. rates would further strengthen the U.S. dollar […]

    Ga. Insurance Commissioner Warning Of Life Insurance Scam

    {February 5th, 2015} by Associated Press

    ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens is warning consumers of a life insurance scam involving unsolicited calls. Hudgens says scammers have been calling consumers offering the proceeds of life insurance policies for a fee. Hudgens says scammers have been asking victims to pay them via multiple pre-paid cards. Hudgens says the suspects call […]

    Symetra Reports Fourth Quarter and Full-Year 2014 Results and Announces 2015 Outlook

    {February 5th, 2015} by Symetra Life Insurance Company

    Fourth Quarter Highlights Strong sales across the company, with growth in medical stop-loss, group life and disability income, fixed indexed annuities and universal life. Benefits generated a favorable loss ratio of 63.2%, compared with 64.0% in fourth quarter 2013. Deferred Annuities account values reached $15.2 billion, from $13.4 billion at year-end 2013. Base interest spreads […]

    Pacific Life Ranks Number One in Indexed Universal Life Insurance Sales for Q3, 2014 Company Leads Industry 22 Quarters in a Row

    {February 5th, 2015} by Pacific Life

    Newport Beach, Calif. (Feb 4, 2015) – Pacific Life Insurance Company once again led the industry as the number one seller of indexed universal life insurance (IUL) 1 for the third quarter of 2014, according to LIMRA International. The company’s IUL products accounted for 17 percent of the industry’s $1.3 billion in sales from January […]

    Allstate dismisses Google’s plans to offer insurance shopping

    {February 5th, 2015} by Becky Yerak, Chicago Tribune

    Allstate’s chief executive sounded dismissive Thursday of Google’s plans to offer online insurance shopping, saying his Northbrook-based company already serves that segment of the market with its Answer Financial unit. During a call to discuss fourth-quarter earnings, an analyst asked Allstate if it would join Google’s marketplace, which is expected to aggregate insurance quotes to […]

    Meet the 10 worst life insurance clients in the world

    {February 5th, 2015} by Bill Coffin

    On every life insurance application process, there is that moment of truth when you have to ask the client if they like to do anything really reckless with their free time. Usually, people all say no, thinking that if they keep their love of bungee jumping a secret, it won’t impact their ability to get […]

    Prudential Downplays $1.5B Capital Loss in 4Q

    {February 5th, 2015} by Arthur D. Postal, arthur.postal@innfeedback.com

    WASHINGTON – Prudential Financial reported a 3.6 percent decline in fourth quarter earnings compared to the year ago — a precipitous 10.9 percent in consensus earnings estimates by analysts for the quarter. But what stunned analysts was its disclosure that the company reported a $1.5 billion drop in estimated excess capital capacity from what it […]

    Prudential Financial: Declining Interest Rates Resulted in Lower Excess Capital Than Expected

    {February 5th, 2015} by Fran Matso Lysiak, senior associate editor, BestWeek: fran.lysiak@ambest.com

    NEWARK, N.J. – Prudential Financial Inc. executives said declining interest rates impacted its excess capital position after equity analysts questioned why it was $1.5 billion lower than the $3.5 billion the company estimated in December. During the fourth-quarter earnings conference call, a few equity analysts questioned areas such as Prudential’s debt, balance sheet or excess […]

    Midland National Life Reaches $1.3 Million Settlement With California for Allegedly Selling Inappropriate Annuities

    {February 5th, 2015} by Thomas Harman, associate editor, BestWeek: Tom.Harman@ambest.com

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Midland National Life Insurance Co. will pay $1.3 million as part of a settlement with the California Department of Insurance and make reforms to its business practices after a probe showed Midland National was allegedly misleading senior citizens when selling annuities deemed inappropriate. The settlement stems from an 18-month market conduct investigation […]

    FSOC Makes Changes to SIFI-Designation Process; Potential Companies Will Be Informed Earlier

    {February 5th, 2015} by Jeff Jeffrey, Washington Bureau manager: jeff.jeffrey@ambest.com

    WASHINGTON – The Financial Stability Oversight Council has agreed to inform companies earlier when they come under review as systemically important financial institutions and provide additional opportunities for companies and their regulators to engage with the council and staff. FSOC members voted to approve that change and others during a non-public conference call hosted by […]

    Afraid of outliving your money? Here’s one solution

    {February 4th, 2015} by Kelley Holland

    If you think saving for retirement is hard, wait until you start thinking about how to make the money last. It’s a challenge that policymakers are focusing on more intently, especially since features like automatic enrollment are encouraging people to save more. Some 55 percent of workers in a 2014 survey by the Employee Benefit […]

    Make informed decision about retirement assets

    {February 4th, 2015} by Gary Boatman

    This past week, I was meeting with a new couple to discuss their retirement. They were regular readers of this column and they were surprised about some of my concerns about their asset allocation. They suggested that I cover this topic so that other Valley residents could make better informed decisions. Unfortunately, this is something […]

    Northwestern Mutual to Recruit 5,000 Financial Representatives and Interns in 2015

    {February 4th, 2015} by Northwestern Mutual

    MILWAUKEE, Feb. 3, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — To meet the demand for financial planning in the U.S., Northwestern Mutual today announced the company is recruiting 2,000 full-time financial representatives and more than 3,000 college interns nationwide. The goal of 5,000 total financial representative recruits also comes at a time when the January jobs report is expected […]

    The power of fixed index strategies

    {February 4th, 2015} by Ali Hashemian, CFP®

    There are a few rules of investing that most people have heard of and can relate to in some way. One of them is “don’t lose money.” This rule is so well-known that many have come to believe that it is the first (and most important) principle when it comes to investment strategies. Many people […]

    Happy 20th Birthday Indexed Annuities!

    {February 3rd, 2015} by Sheryl J. Moore

    Since I first learned about indexed annuities, I’ve believed in them. What’s not to love? A retirement product that promises a guaranteed income that I cannot outlive, a minimum guaranteed interest, the potential to earn more than fixed money instruments, and no risk of loss due to market fluctuations. SIGN ME UP! I’m proud to […]

    10 things the insurance industry can learn from the Super Bowl XLIX ads

    {February 3rd, 2015} by Lynette Gil

    If you didn’t catch Super Bowl XLIX last Sunday, you at least watched the ads, or have seen all the buzz on your social media platform of choice. This year’s Super Bowl topped out at more than 114.4 million viewers, which makes it the most watched broadcast in U.S. TV history, according to CNN Money.  Which of […]