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Archive for April 2019


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  • Expect solid growth for indexed annuities through 2023

    {April 10th, 2019} by Insurance Forums Staff

    Indexed annuities are positioned for significant growth through 2023 while the market share for variable annuities will continue to erode, according to a new LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute (LIMRA SRI) analysis of sales and market trends. LIMRA SRI released its annuity sales forecast for the next five years on April 4, predicting fixed annuities will […]

    The ABCs of FIAs

    {April 10th, 2019} by Jim Poolman

    A Conversation with Jim Poolman [Financial Poise Editor’s Note: Jim Poolman is Executive Director of the Indexed Annuity Leadership Council, a coalition of life insurance companies that offer fixed indexed annuities (FIAs). He outlined the benefits of this stable retirement savings vehicle for the readers of Financial Poise.] What are Fixed Index Annuities (FIAs)? FIAs […]

    Use of Social Media Nearly Universal Among Financial Advisors, According to New Putnam Investments Study

    {April 9th, 2019} by Putnam Investments

    BOSTON, April 8, 2019 – It is no longer a question of whether a financial advisor uses social media, but rather how they make use of it, according to the sixth edition of the Putnam Investments Social Advisor Study released today. Nearly all U.S. financial advisors (98%) are using social media for business and/or personal use at this […]

    Trump Nominates New SEC Commissioner

    {April 9th, 2019} by Melanie Waddell

    President Donald Trump announced Tuesday that he has nominated veteran securities lawyer Allison Herren Lee to serve as a commissioner at the Securities and Exchange Commission. Lee, who served at the SEC from 2005 to 2018 in various roles including senior counsel in the Complex Financial Instruments Unit, and as counsel to former Commissioner Kara Stein, enters […]

    3 Simple Ways to Improve Opportunities for Female Advisors

    {April 9th, 2019} by Cristi Meyers

    The financial service business has been talking about doing more to add and support female advisors for a number of years, but, frankly, despite all the chatter, we’re not making enough progress. Women still account for less than 20% of all independent financial advisors. It’s time to get serious. Not only is it good to […]

    Life Insurers Sinking in Quicksand as Regulators Scrutinize Non-Traditional Consumer Data Sources

    {April 9th, 2019} by Ann Young Black, Jamie Bigayer

    As previously reported in our October 9, 2018, client alert, the sands began shifting in late 2018 when the NAIC Big Data Working Group (Big Data WG) began questioning life insurer’s use of big data after a LIMRA survey found that 50 percent of responding life insurers were already using some form of automated underwriting. […]

    Bankers Life Named a 2019 Training Top 125 Award Winner for Eighth Consecutive Year

    {April 9th, 2019} by Bankers Life

    CHICAGO, April 4, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Bankers Life, a national life and health insurance brand that focuses on the insurance needs of Americans who are near or in retirement, has been named to Training magazine’s Training Top 125 for the eighth year in a row. The Training Top 125 list was created to recognize companies’ employer-sponsored training and […]

    Cetera to acquire assets of Foresters Financial’s U.S. advisory business

    {April 9th, 2019} by InvestmentNews

    Cetera has agreed to purchase select assets of Foresters Financial’s U.S. broker-dealer and advisory business. Terms of the transaction, which is expected to close in June, were not disclosed. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews.


    {April 9th, 2019} by Jackson National Life Insurance Company

    Among 500 leading international contact centers, Jackson named Contact Center of the Year Finalist by Service Quality Measurement Group, Inc. Lansing, Mich. – April 3, 2018 – Jackson National Life Insurance Company® (Jackson®) earned four awards from the Service Quality Measurement Group, Inc. (SQM)1 for excellence in contact center service in 2017. Notably, SQM named Jackson a top-three Contact Center […]

    ‘Best Interest’ Is Sometimes Best Left Undefined, Regulator Says

    {April 9th, 2019} by John Hilton

    BALTIMORE — There is a good reason why state insurance regulators are not keen on spelling out a “best interest” standard in an annuity sales rule, said Matthew Gendron, counsel for the Rhode Island Division of Insurance. And it has nothing to do with fear of a strong standard, he added. Gendron is on a […]

    Are Millennials ‘Financially Fragile?’

    {April 9th, 2019} by Cassie Miller

    BALTIMORE — The rising cost of living and cost of education has changed the financial landscape for millennials. But as Matthew Greenwald and AnnMarie Pino of Greenwald & Associates discovered, there’s more for advisors to understand when it comes to millennials and financial fragility. Greenwald and Pino led a session today at the 2019 Retirement Industry […]

    Kindur to Sell American Equity Fixed Annuity with Living Benefits

    {April 9th, 2019} by Kerry Pechter

    Last December, RIJ wrote about Kindur, a direct-to-consumer Internet platform designed to help people create ETF portfolios for savings and monthly income and, if they wish, to sell them an income-generating annuity. Click HERE to read the full story via RIJ.

    Allianz Life’s new binary indexed annuity: A remedy for RMDs

    {April 9th, 2019} by Editorial Staff

    Affluent retirees perennially complain about the chore and sting of taking taxable required minimum distributions (RMDs) from their 401(k)s, 403(b)s or traditional IRAs after age 70½. For those who don’t happen to need the money for current income, the RMD means nothing but confusing paperwork and an unwelcome tax bill. Click HERE to read the […]

    Foresters Sells Money Manager, Keeps Life Business

    {April 9th, 2019} by Allison Bell

    The Independent Order of Foresters today announced plans to sell its U.S. asset-management and broker-dealer businesses and focus more tightly on its core life insurance operations. The Toronto-based fraternal insurer says it intends to focus on increasing sales of life insurance to mass-market and middle-market consumers in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. Macquarie […]

    NAIC May Cancel Shift to New Guaranteed Issue Life Table

    {April 9th, 2019} by Allison Bell

    The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) may roll back a move toward a new mortality table for guaranteed issue life insurance. Some state insurance regulators say moving toward the new 2017 Commissioners Standard Guaranteed Issue Mortality Table, which was approved in 2018, would cause big problems for life insurers. Regulators have proposed a canceling […]

    Nearly Half of Americans More Likely to Buy Simplified Underwritten Life Insurance

    {April 9th, 2019} by IJ Staff

    Almost half of Americans (47 per cent) say they are more likely to buy life insurance using simplified underwriting, versus traditional underwriting approaches, according to new findings from the 2019 Insurance Barometer Study. The Insurance Barometer Study tracks the financial perceptions, attitudes and behaviours of consumers in the United States, with an emphasis on life insurance. LIMRA and Life Happens, a […]

    Northwestern Mutual Study: Caring for Aging Parents is Not a Family Affair

    {April 9th, 2019} by Northwestern Mutual

    MILWAUKEE, April 3, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — For most families, caring for mom or dad as they age is not a family effort.  According to new data from Northwestern Mutual’s latest C.A.R.E. Study, the responsibility most likely falls on the shoulders of one sibling, rather than being shared among all the children. Findings reveal that two in five caregivers […]

    The DOL Fiduciary Rule is About to Return

    {April 9th, 2019} by FINSUM

    In what likely comes as frustrating news for a lot of the wealth management industry, it is time to start worrying once again about the return of the fiduciary rule. And we are not talking about state level rules, or new interpretations of the SEC rule, we mean the old DOL rule itself. Click HERE […]

    Allstate to Sell Annuity Business, Focus on Growth Areas

    {April 9th, 2019} by Zacks Equity Research

    The Allstate Corporation ALL is in talks with FGL Holdings FG to sell-off its annuity business, per Reuters. Notably, the company has been looking for options to get rid of this business due to disappointing returns. Allstate’s annuities segment accounted for about 2.4% of total revenues and 0.2% of total policies in force in 2018. The […]

    10 Smartest States for Financial Literacy: 2019

    {April 9th, 2019} by Emily Zulz

    With total American credit card debt surpassing $1 trillion for the first time in 2018 and only two in five adults having a budget, it’s clear that better financial education is necessary. However, these problems aren’t as pronounced in every state. A new WalletHub studylooks at which states’ residents are the most financially literate. In order to do this, WalletHub […]

    Key Financial Steps That Couples Need To Take

    {April 9th, 2019} by Joel Johnson

    Marriage is a partnership. There are many demands and expectations that enter into the partnership and therefore equality, respect and trust must be shown by both sides. As you grow the marriage, hopefully, smart investing and sound business decisions have allowed you to grow your financial portfolios as well. Often, one partner takes the lead […]

    As fiduciary rule sunsets, certain annuities gain favor with boomers

    {April 9th, 2019} by Donald Jay Korn

    After weathering a turbulent three years, variable and fixed index annuities with guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefits have gained traction — for now. Retail sales of these riders in VAs and FIAs fell by more than 42% from the third quarter of 2014 to the third quarter of 2017, in part because many advisors didn’t know how the […]

    Great American Life Ranked Number One Provider of Fixed-Indexed Annuities through Financial Institutions for Third Straight Year

    {April 9th, 2019} by Great American Insurance Group

    CINCINNATI — April 4, 2019 — Great American Life® once again landed the number one spot for fixed-indexed annuity (FIA) sales through financial institutions, capturing nearly 15% of the channel’s $12 billion in sales in 2018. The company has maintained the top position in four out of the last five years. Additionally, when it comes to […]

    SEC member Robert Jackson Jr. calls for ‘bipartisan’ Regulation Best Interest

    {April 9th, 2019} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    Securities and Exchange Commission member Robert Jackson Jr. urged his colleagues to approve an advice reform rule across party lines so that it can withstand court challenges. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews.

    House Panel Passes Retirement Bill to Raise RMD Age, Boost Annuities

    {April 9th, 2019} by Melanie Waddell

    The House Ways and Means Committee on Tuesday passed H.R. 1994, the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act of 2019, which makes it easer to offer annuities in 401(k) and 403(b) plans, raises the age for taking required minimum distributions from 70 1/2 to 72, and expands 529 plan use to homeschooling. During […]

    MVA Annuity Sales Were Wicked Hot: IRI

    {April 9th, 2019} by Allison Bell

    Annuity market trackers at the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) are seeing even more heat in the market-value adjusted (MVA) annuity market than the LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute is. The LIMRA institute analysts have estimated that overall U.S. sales of individual annuities increased to $63 billion in the fourth quarter of 2018, up 23% from the […]

    Commonwealth case against Ohio National should be arbitrated, court rules

    {April 9th, 2019} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    A dispute between Commonwealth Financial Network and Ohio National Life Insurance Co. over the insurer’s decision to end trail commissions on variable annuities will be decided in Finra arbitration. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews. 

    Baby Boomers Face Growing Retirement Anxiety

    {April 9th, 2019} by Insured Retirement Institute

    April 08, 2019 11:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Retirement anxiety is growing among Baby Boomers, many of whom have little to no retirement savings, forcing more Boomers to postpone retirement. An annual survey of Baby Boomer retirement expectations by the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) found that 45% of Boomers have zero savings for their golden years. […]

    SEC’s Own ‘Best Interest’ Regs Might Ban Sales Commissions: Legal Analyst

    {April 9th, 2019} by Allison Bell

    Many observers are assuming that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Regulation Best Interest proposal would be easier on life insurance agents and brokers than some states’ tough fiduciary rule, best interest and suitability measures might be. But, in the real world, the SEC’s Regulation BI might be tougher on agents than expected, because the […]

    A State Investigator, the Financial-Adviser ‘Heir’ and an Elderly Client: How Lines Get Blurred in Insurance Regulation

    {April 9th, 2019} by Gretchen Morgenson

    state investigator concluded a financial adviser acted unethically and violated Maryland insurance laws when he received a windfall from an elderly client’s estate. An arbitration panel then blasted the adviser’s firm for what it called seriously deficient supervision. The firm also wasn’t qualified to operate in the state at the time. What happened next? The […]

    Voices: How financial planning will change by 2039

    {April 9th, 2019} by Bob Veres

    In our ongoing efforts to help advisors prepare for what’s to come, I agreed to be sent on assignment into the year 2039 to interview a financial planner who has successfully made a variety of significant transformations. I happened to arrive near the end of March, so I immediately apologized for interrupting the usual office […]

    Who Will Still Feed Them When They’re 64?

    {April 9th, 2019} by Steve Morelli

    BALTIMORE – Retirement was for squares when baby boomers were young. Love you when you’re 64? We don’t even trust anybody over 30, they said. But now many of the cool kids are thinking of nothing but retirement, the subject of the Retirement Industry Conference starting today in Baltimore with about 300 attendees. Click HERE to […]

    Few Americans Think They Own Annuities

    {April 9th, 2019} by Allison Bell

    Life Happens and LIMRA have published survey results highlighting a serious financial services market analysis problem: American survey takers appear to be hazy about what financial services products they own — and more reliable comparison numbers are hard to find. The groups focused attention on survey takers’ awareness gap in a batch of data from their 2019 […]

    Reinventing life insurance agency distribution globally

    {April 9th, 2019} by Insurance Forums Staff

    Life insurers globally face multiple challenges and among the most critical is the sustainability of their agency distribution models. After decades of limited innovation, distribution is on the cusp of major change, which will unlock benefits for all stakeholders, according to a recently released joint research report from Boston Consulting Group (BCG)and Morgan Stanley Research, Reinventing Life […]

    Regulators May Update Indexed Annuity Capital Thermometer

    {April 9th, 2019} by Allison Bell

    State insurance regulators may change the way they take the temperature of indexed annuity issuers. Members of the Life Risk-Based Capital Working Group — an arm of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) — are talking about the idea of easing up on their current approach to calculating risk-based capital (RBC) ratios for indexed annuities that […]

    Principal to acquire Wells Fargo Institutional Retirement & Trust business

    {April 9th, 2019} by Principal Financial Group

    Definitive agreement includes Wells Fargo’s defined contribution, defined benefit, executive deferred compensation, employee stock ownership plans, institutional trust and custody and institutional asset advisory businesses. Doubles Principal U.S. retirement businessi; achieving greater scale and balance to compete, invest and grow. A powerful combination for customers, employees and shareholders; will make Principal a Top 3 defined […]

    Insurers Try to Sell the World on Retirement Income Guarantees

    {April 9th, 2019} by Allison Bell

    Life insurers and their vendors made the case this week in Baltimore that retirement income guarantees matter, and that life insurers can meet their income guarantee obligations. The income planning community traveled to the Charm City waterfront for the 2019 Retirement Industry Conference, which was organized by the LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute and the Society […]

    They Aren’t Buying It: Single Parents And Life Insurance

    {April 9th, 2019} by Susan Rupe

    Nearly half of single parents with children under age 18 don’t have life insurance, and the majority of them say the reason they don’t have coverage is because they believe it’s too expensive. That was one of the findings of a recent survey conducted by PacWealth Solutions. The survey showed that the lack of life […]

    NAIFA Launches Center To Advance Long-Term Care

    {April 9th, 2019} by NAIFA

    NAIFA Center to connect financial advisors, consumers with industry experts in long-term care to meet changing needs of a growing market First-ever digital hub is result of collaboration between NAIFA and companies across multiple categories in limited and extended care The National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors has launched the NAIFA Limited & Extended Care Planning […]

    Nationwide CEO Steve Rasmussen Plans to Retire

    {April 9th, 2019} by Nationwide

    April 04, 2019 Columbus, OH – Nationwide Chief Executive Officer Steve Rasmussen announced today that he plans to retire effective October 1, 2019. The Nationwide Board of Directors is conducting a search for a successor with the support of an independent CEO succession advisor. Rasmussen will continue to be available through the end of this year to […]

    Nationwide reports sales growth and strong capital position in 2018

    {April 9th, 2019} by Nationwide

    April 04, 2019 Columbus, OH – Nationwide reported $47 billion in total sales, up nearly $500 million from 2017, in its 2018 annual report, released today. The company posted $26.9 billion in operating revenue and $1.3 billion in net operating income (NOI) – more than doubling its NOI from 2017. At the same time, the company paid $16.6 […]

    MassMutual will close Ballantyne office this summer, laying off 160-plus employees

    {April 9th, 2019} by Caroline Hudson

    Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. will close its Ballantyne office as of June 30 and lay off 164 employees here. MassMutual will lay off 163 employees on June 3, followed by one more between June 27 and July 3, according to a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification filed with the North Carolina Department of Commerce. […]

    Distributors Foresee Annuity Boom Through Advisory Channels

    {April 9th, 2019} by John Hilton

    BALTIMORE — Raymond James Insurance Group executives spend a lot of time in meetings sorting through issues related to commission-based sales. While the Department of Labor fiduciary rule is gone, tossed out by a federal appeals court one year ago, the compliance spotlight it shone on commission annuity sales remains. “At every one of these […]

    Global Bankers Insurance Group Pursues Sale of U.S. Life Insurance Companies

    {April 9th, 2019} by Global Bankers Insurance Group, LLC

    DURHAM, N.C., April 5, 2019 – Global Bankers Insurance Group, LLC (“Global Bankers” or “the Company”) today confirmed that it is pursuing a sale of its U.S. life insurance companies and has been in active discussions with potential acquirers. The Company issued the following statement: “Global Bankers made the decision to sell its domestic life […]

    Global Bankers Insurance in Discussions to Sell US Life Insurers

    {April 9th, 2019} by Renée Kiriluk-Hill

    DURHAM, N.C. – Global Bankers Insurance Group LLC plans to sell its U.S. life insurance companies, the company said days after group owner Greg E. Lindberg was indicted on bribery charges. The company has been in active discussion with potential acquirers, Global Banker said in a statement. It said a sale would be in the […]

    Blueprint Income and Pacific Life Launch New Digital Experience to Modernize Annuity Market

    {April 9th, 2019} by Blueprint Income

    NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. and NEW YORK, April 9, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Pacific Life and InsurTech firm Blueprint Income, today announced a collaboration to modernize the purchase of annuities. The first product, Next Deferred Income Annuity, provides a predetermined amount of monthly income starting at a predetermined retirement date in the future and is available on Blueprint Income’s platform, an online […]

    Judge: Ohio National Decision To End Trails Eligible For Arbitration

    {April 9th, 2019} by John Hilton

    A Massachusetts’ federal judge has ruled that Finra arbitration is appropriate to settle one of several legal challenges to Ohio National’s decision to end trail commissions on a specific variable annuity. Judge Denise J. Casper ruled that an addendum to the Ohio National selling agreement commits them to arbitration with Commonwealth Equity Services. An independent […]

    It’s A Fixed Annuity World And Distributors Are Just Living In It

    {April 9th, 2019} by John Hilton

    BALTIMORE — The annuity sales landscape changed in a major way in 2018. Sales rebounded strongly in virtually every product line, in some cases 40 to 50 percent year-over-year. Click HERE to read the full story via INN.

    Getting to know our Central Intelligence Officer

    {April 9th, 2019} by Wink's RockStars

    IF YOU THOUGHT OUR CHIEF STORYTELLER KNEW LIFE INSURANCE, WAIT UNTIL YOU GET A LOAD OF THIS GUY… Andrew J. Berman, Central Intelligence Officer,  is the life insurance savant of Wink’s analysis team; a real “Rainman” if you are picking-up what we’re putting-down. He provides insight, marketing assistance, technical support, and product knowledge that product development/pricing […]

    Are glossy annuity ads glossing over the issues?

    {April 8th, 2019} by Tobias Salinger

    A well-funded industry group is using the Rolling Stones’ upcoming tour to present annuities as the mother’s little helper needed to offset the financial drag of getting old. Backed by 24 of the largest issuers and asset managers, the new Alliance for Lifetime Income will be the sole sponsor of the Stones’ 2019 “No Filter” […]

    Morgan Stanley Must Face Trial Over Annuity Advice

    {April 8th, 2019} by Jacklyn Wille

    Morgan Stanley & Co. and one of its senior vice presidents must defend a lawsuit by three clients who said they got a $300,000 tax bill after taking their advice to cash out their inherited annuities. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit revived the lawsuit against Morgan Stanley adviser Gary Lenet after […]

    Indexed annuity sales projected to grow nearly 40% by 2023

    {April 6th, 2019} by Greg Iacurci

    Indexed annuities, fresh off a record sales year, are poised for substantial growth over the next four years, according to projections from Limra, an insurance industry group that expects the stock market to remain volatile and interest rates to continue their steady ascent. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews. 

    Allstate close to selling annuity book to FGL Holdings: sources

    {April 5th, 2019} by David French

    NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. insurer Allstate Corp has entered into exclusive talks to sell a book of insurance policies from an area where it no longer generates new business to smaller peer FGL Holdings, people familiar with the matter said on Wednesday. Should the deal go ahead, it would be the latest transaction involving […]

    Why Indexed Annuity Sales Are So Strong

    {April 4th, 2019} by Kerry Pechter

    For Jim Fahey, an Ameriprise advisor in Center Valley, PA, 2018 was a hockey-stick year for fixed indexed annuity (FIA) sales. “FIAs were roughly 25% of my business in 2017. But in 2018 they represented 50% to 60%,” he said this week. “I still have variable annuities on the books but I don’t think I […]

    Maryland fiduciary bill killed in committee

    {April 4th, 2019} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    Further action appears unlikely with legislature set to adjourn April 8   A bill that would have raised investment advice standards in Maryland suffered a major setback when it was rejected in committee. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews. 

    Could You Sell A Life Insurance Policy To Al Bundy?

    {April 4th, 2019} by John Hilton

    BALTIMORE — Al Bundy would not be a good life insurance prospect, but Jay Pritchett would be a warm one. The two iconic television characters played by actor Ed O’Neill represent the hot and cold of prospecting, said Vikram Kamath, director of the LIMRA Center of Excellence for Analytics. Kamath shared the results of new analytics […]

    Are Annuities the Best Strategy to Fund One’s Retirement?

    {April 3rd, 2019} by Michael Edesess

    Suppose you are retired, or soon-to-be retired, and you have no reason to leave a bequest. You have no offspring, or they are financially independent – or you want them to be – and you have no charities to which you wish to leave money. You just want to assure yourself of as much income […]

    FGL Holdings Announces CFO Succession Process

    {April 2nd, 2019} by FGL Holdings

    DES MOINES, Iowa, April 2, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — FGL Holdings (NYSE: FG) (the “Company” or “F&G”), a leading provider of annuities and life insurance, today announced that Dennis Vigneau, the Company’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO), has decided to retire from F&G at the end of 2019. The Company has initiated a search process for a permanent CFO and will retain a […]

    Fixed Index Annuities: ‘Magical’ or ‘Unsuitable’?

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Philly.com

    April 02– JESSICA GRIFFIN / Staff Photographer Fixed index annuities High-profile fixed index annuities salesman Phillip J. Cannella 3rd at one the free dinners he hosts across the region to promote his company. Cannella, who also hosts an hour-long paid radio infomercial every Saturday and Sunday, says his firm writes $100 million in contracts annually, earning $6 to $8 million in commissions. As sales […]

    Life Insurers Need To Get Trendy, Panelists Agree

    {April 2nd, 2019} by John Hilton

    BALTIMORE — Paul Fedchak recalled a recent conversation with a life insurance professional who said their carrier had the email addresses for just 20 percent of their in-force block of customers. Fedchak was stunned by the revelation, he said during an afternoon session today at the 2019 Life Insurance Conference. “Every business you engage with […]

    6 Personal Finance Trends That Should Worry All Americans

    {April 2nd, 2019} by American Institute of CPA's National CPA Financial Literacy Commission

    Experts provide tips on paying down debt, saving for retirement and staying current on car payments AICPA’s 360 Degrees of Financial Literacy Website provides tools and resources to empower Americans to make better financial decisions April 02, 2019 07:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–April is National Financial Literacy Month, which means it’s the perfect time […]

    Marty Kennedy joins Midland National

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Midland National Life Insurance

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa, April 02, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Leading insurance and annuity financial services company Midland National® Life Insurance Company (Midland National), a member company of Sammons® Financial Group (SFG), announced the recent hiring of Marty Kennedy as vice president of distribution and sales, independent broker/dealer. Kennedy is an established financial services professional with over 25-years of experience in […]

    The Retirement Spectrum: Ethnicity and Culture Influence Views on Retirement

    {April 2nd, 2019} by MassMutual State of the the American Family survey

    SPRINGFIELD, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–One size does not fit all for today’s diverse consumers when it comes to retirement. In fact, it is increasingly becoming a very personalized journey, as underscored by the latest research from Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. (MassMutual). The MassMutual State of the American Family (SOAF) study1 highlights differences between diverse communities for retirement […]

    Best’s Special Report: Life/Annuity Earnings Remain Strong Amid Macroeconomic Volatility

    {April 2nd, 2019} by A.M. Best

    OLDWICK, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Macroeconomic volatility continues to challenge the investment and operating environment for publicly traded U.S. life/annuity insurers. A slight decline of 3.6% in overall revenue during 2018 was attributable in part to a 25.3% decline in net investment income, according to a new AM Best special report. The analysis in the Best’s Special Report, “Life/Annuity Earnings Remain Strong […]

    New Fixed Index Annuity Solution from Allianz Life Helps Clients Address Challenges with RMDs, Leave Financial Legacy

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America

    MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–To help clients navigate the sometimes-confusing required minimum distribution (RMD) process while also enhancing their financial legacy, Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz Life®) today announced the launch of its Legacy by Design℠ fixed index annuity (FIA) solution. Legacy by Design is a combination of two FIAs that work together to systematically and […]

    Insurtech Shaking Up The Life Insurance Industry

    {April 2nd, 2019} by John Hilton

    BALTIMORE — Although the insurance industry is known for moving slowly when it comes to change, the insurtech revolution is forcing executives out of their comfort zones. Technology is changing the industry from the initial life insurance application to how clients are services many years down the road. And virtually everything in between. While so much […]

    Panel: Let’s Hope The SEC Takes Charge Of ‘Best Interest’ Movement

    {April 2nd, 2019} by John Hilton

    BALTIMORE — The Securities and Exchange Commission has been very deliberate with its Regulation Best Interest, which was tentatively adopted last April. Since then, not a lot has happened as the SEC collects comments and tinkers with the rule behind closed doors. But there may be a method to their madness, said Carl Wilkerson, vice […]

    House committee unanimously approves sweeping retirement bill

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Mark Schoeff Jr.

    Measure would help small businesses offer plans, require that statements include lifetime-income projections, ease use of annuities in plans and increase the RMD age. The House Ways and Means Committee unanimously approved sweeping legislation Tuesday to increase retirement savings. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews. 

    National Western Life Adds Policy Aimed at Foreign Nationals

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Allison Bell

    National Western Life Inc. is starting a new life insurance program aimed at foreign nationals. The program will provide access to term life and indexed universal life products for people who are not U.S. citizens or U.S. residents, the company announced Monday. The company’s National Western Life Insurance Company unit will write the coverage through […]

    MetLife’s Kandarian Warns Regulators to Keep Eye on New Entrants

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Katherine Chiglinsky and Erik Schatzker

    Steven Kandarian, MetLife Inc.’s outgoing chief executive officer, delivered a note of caution to regulators: Keep a close eye on some of the new rivals in the life insurance industry. “The regulators have to look very hard at the new entrants in terms of how they’re investing their money in particular — what kind of […]

    Symetra and Athene Add Indexed Annuity Products

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Allison Bell

    Symetra Life Insurance Company has introduced a new indexed annuity with an index menu that extends beyond plain vanilla S&P 500 index options. Another carrier, Athene USA, has gone beyond the S&P 500 zone by adding index options to annuities that are already on the market. Symetra — a Bellevue, Washington-based company that’s owned by Sumitomo […]

    North Carolina GOP Chairman Faces Charges Related to Insurance Regulation

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Erik Larson

    The chairman of North Carolina’s Republican party was indicted alongside the founder of an investment firm for allegedly participating in a scheme to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes to sway decisions at the state’s insurance regulator. Robin Hayes and the others made their initial court appearances Tuesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge David […]

    5 Smart Ways Life Insurance Distribution Organizations Can Still Use Incentive Travel

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Mark Herbert

    Life insurance moves through a sales channel. It travels from the insurance company through brokerage agencies, who rely on independent and corporate agents to sell the policy, to the end consumer. When designing a strategic incentive program, the objective is to identify at what point in the sales channel incentive rewards can be applied to […]


    {April 2nd, 2019} by ACLI News Release

    Washington, D.C. (March 29, 2019) – The American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) congratulates the West Virginia Legislature and Governor Jim Justice for enacting legislation that promotes West Virginians’ retirement security.   West Virginia now joins nearly every other state in exempting annuities from premium taxes so that even more of its retirement savers can enjoy […]

    New annuities starting to address RMDs

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Greg Iacurci

    Allianz Life Insurance Co. of North America is launching an indexed annuity geared toward clients 70½ and older who don’t need the money that the government requires they withdraw each year from retirement accounts in the form of required minimum distributions. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews.  ……………………………………………………………………………….. “I’ve never heard of […]

    Best Places to Work for Financial Advisers: The research and the data

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Matt Sirinides

    As InvestmentNews celebrates its second class of Best Places to Work for Financial Advisers, we’d like to use the opportunity to shed some light on the practices that play the biggest role in setting the Best Places apart from the competition by taking a deeper look at the data firms provide in order to be considered for […]

    Life Groups Welcome the SECURE Act — RESA’s Bipartisan Retirement Bill Daughter

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Allison Bell

    Life insurance and annuity industry groups today celebrated the unveiling of the new version of the “Retirement Enhancement and Savings Act” bill. House Ways & Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal joined with both Democratic colleagues and Republican colleagues to introduce the “Setting Every Community up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019″ bill. The first RESA bill surfaced […]

    Let’s Make Kids Part of the Financial Literacy Conversation

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Jack Kosakowski and Danielle Robinson

    The observance of National Retirement Planning Week, April 8-12, and Financial Literacy Month each April provides an excellent opportunity to consider how we empower younger generations to make sound financial decisions. In many families, money is considered a topic “too adult” for kids. But, young people learn by seeing and doing, so why are we […]

    Who Gets The Life Insurance? Not The Ex-Spouse, States Say

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Douglas I. Friedman

    It’s rare that the U.S. Supreme Court decides a case with immediate impact on an advisor’s daily activities, but that is exactly what happened on June 11, 2018. That was the day the court validated a Minnesota statute that retroactively revoked a life insurance beneficiary designation because the beneficiary was the former spouse of the […]

    JPMorgan reportedly cutting hundreds of jobs in asset, wealth unit

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Bloomberg News

    JPMorgan Chase & Co. is dismissing hundreds of workers in its asset and wealth management division after a periodic review of staffing, according to a person briefed on the matter. Click HERE to read the full story via InvestmentNews. 

    Reg BI Readiness Questioned on All Fronts: SEC Commissioners, Trade Groups, Legislators

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Melanie Waddell

    The Securities and Exchange Commission’s Regulation Best Interest continues to grab headlines as two SEC commissioners recently made candid comments about the three-pronged advice-standards package and House lawmakers held the first hearing on the plan. Interest in the package is reaching a fever pitch as the plan is anticipated to be finalized in late summer. […]

    Life Insurers Can Use Social Media Data in Underwriting. Should They?

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Brian Byer

    The New York State Department of Financial Services recently issued guidelines for life insurance companies that plan to use social media, and other available online data resources, when underwriting new policies and establishing premiums. While it’s never been illegal to do so, new advances in technology and the proliferation of third-party data vendors have made […]

    Record sales yield new leading annuity issuers

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Tobias Salinger and Graison Dangor

    The end of the annuity sales slump related to the fiduciary rule also resulted in new top issuers, as fixed and fixed-index products broke records in 2018. Click HERE to read the full story via Financial Planning.    …………………………………………………………………………………   In an unprecedented development, the top 15 writers of multi-year guaranteed annuities each took in […]

    How To Choose A Life Insurance Beneficiary

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Peter Colis

    One of the world’s most influential fashion moguls passed away and may have dedicated part of a $300 million fortune to his pet cat . This had a lot of people undoubtedly thinking, “Who would I leave everything to if I died unexpectedly?” While there are many ways to ensure the loved ones you leave behind are taken […]

    State Case Could Shake Up Life, Annuity and LTCI Issuer Insolvencies

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Allison Bell

    Life insurers are clashing with health insurers over what should happen to long-duration insurance policies when the issuers fail and state guaranty associations step in. Health insurers want the default to be for protection to be limited to a state’s guaranty limits. They want to see receivers to get court permission before using a failed […]

    Vote Now for the 2019 IA25

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Janet Levaux

    Which leaders and innovators most affect your advisory business? Popular industry speakers like Mark Tibergien, Michael Kitces and Liz Ann Sonders? Or global VIPs such as Warren Buffett, Tim Cook and President Donald Trump? For the second year in a row, we are asking for your input on Investment Advisor’s annnual list of the top 25 […]

    IMF managing director says economy is at ‘delicate moment’

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Martin Crutsinger / AP

    WASHINGTON — The head of the 189-nation International Monetary Fund said Tuesday the global economy is at a “delicate moment” with a hoped-for rebound in growth later this year being threatened by a variety of factors such as rising trade tensions between the world’s two biggest economies. IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said the IMF […]

    SEC Wants to Resolve Conflicts Between Reg BI and State Fiduciary Rules

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Rita Raagas De Ramos

    The SEC is working with states that have fiduciary rule initiatives to avoid conflicts with the final version of the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest, according to Brett Redfearn, director of the regulator’s Division of Trading and Markets. “We’re taking in a lot of inputs from the states. We’re communicating with them as much as possible. We’re looking for […]

    More Americans Likely To Buy Simplified Underwritten Life Insurance

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Jacqueline Sergeant

    Americans want ease and speed when buying life insurance so they are opting to go the route of simplified underwriting, according to the 2019 Insurance Barometer Study conducted by LIMRA and Life Happens. And because ownership numbers are declining, many insurance companies have leveraged advances in technology—such as advanced analytics, big data and artificial intelligence—to […]

    This advisor says the industry lacks a community. Here’s what she’s doing about it

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Tobias Salinger

    Financial advisor Nina O’Neal was tired of being “talked at” during industry conferences. What’s more, she was frustrated there were few, if any, planner-led resources for women advisors. So she took matters into her own hands. First, O’Neal designed and created an “anti-conference” retreat. Even as she was finalizing those plans, she realized she could […]

    More financial advisors are turning to insurance products to boost fixed income for clients

    {April 2nd, 2019} by CNBC

    Economic and demographic shifts are making life insurance and annuities more attractive options for fixed income, financial advisors say. “In a typical 60/40 portfolio, because bond returns are at a 50-year low, I’m seeing people moving funds from bonds to either life insurance or income annuities as a substitute,” said Tom Hegna, an insurance industry […]

    Global Atlantic Appoints Edward Wilson as Chief Risk Officer

    {April 2nd, 2019} by Business Wire

    NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Global Atlantic Financial Group, a leading U.S.-focused retirement, life insurance and reinsurance company, is pleased to announce that Edward Wilson has joined the company as Chief Risk Officer effective April 1st. Wilson, who joins Global Atlantic after a 26 year career at Goldman Sachs, will also serve on the Management Committee and chair […]