Apple, Apple, Apple, Orange
September 11, 2019 by Jack D. Aiken
Three times in the past week I came across articles in the financial press that mischaracterized what annuities are, do, and the role they play in retirement planning.
These were not intentionally misleading rants such as we often see flipping channels on late night cable or falling out of our junk mail. Nor were they the efforts of a third-year assistant-editor in an east-nowhere community weekly. These respected financial services publications had simply stepped into a repeated narrative that is simply wrong.
Perhaps not surprising as the regulatory collective talks in circles with a similar lack of understanding of annuities — particularly guaranteed fixed annuities.
In one instance, the market share of annuities, which are specific insurance products, was contrasted to that of various tax environments which are regulatory manipulations of the tax code in pretext of achieving some broader social goal. That article questioned “What percentage of retirement accounts were in IRAs, and a few other tax environments, as opposed to Individual annuities?”