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Equity-indexed annuities poised for growth

June 13, 2005

NEW YORK - Annuity payments that rise based on stock market performance are expected to become more popular, especially among retirees and those nearing retirement, as inflation makes a comeback, industry observers say. Equity-indexed annuities...

Insurance regulators, legislators go head to head

June 13, 2005

WASHINGTON - State insurance regulators and legislators will square off next month over whether privately held insurers should have to meet the financial control and accounting requirements of the controversial and expensive Sarbanes-Oxley Act...

'Investor-owned' insurance flap

June 13, 2005

WASHINGTON - State insurance commissioners, turning against controversial "investor-owned" life insurance policies, are gearing up to try to curb the practice. "What commissioners are concerned about is the changing of insurable interest laws...

Flat-fee variable annuity makes its debut

June 6, 2005

NEW YORK - Jefferson National Life Insurance Co. has introduced a modestly priced, flat-fee variable annuity targeting financial advisers, and some have expressed interest. The Dallas-based company charges a flat fee of $20 a month, regardless...

Public awareness of life insurance needs fuels optimism

June 6, 2005

NEW YORK - The vast majority of life insurance producers in the United States think that they will increase sales in 2005, according to a recent report by LIMRA International Inc. Fueling producers' optimism is previous research by Windsor,...

NYLIM goal: MainStay with intermediaries

June 6, 2005

NEW YORK - New York Life Investment Management LLC in Parsippany, N.J., is on a mission to drum up interest from financial intermediaries in its $17 billion MainStay Funds group by adding people and coming out with new products. It's a mission...

Life industry girds for tax reform battle

May 30, 2005

WASHINGTON - The life insurance industry isn't waiting for the president's tax reforms and instead is gearing up in advance of any proposals that would eliminate taxes on investment earnings. The recent announcement that MetLife Inc. of New...

Kansas toughens VA sale regs, beats NASD to the punch

May 30, 2005

NEW YORK - State insurance officials, rather than NASD regulators, have been the first to hit many independent-contractor broker-dealers where it hurts - how their affiliated registered representatives and advisers sell variable annuities. Last...

Property insurance crunch is raising 'cane in Florida

May 30, 2005

NEW YORK - With another hurricane season starting on Wednesday - and many Florida property insurers either dropping policies or raising rates - advisers are warning clients to take insurance availability and cost into account when deciding whether...

NASD chief quits board of insurer tied to members

May 23, 2005

NEW YORK - NASD's chairman and chief executive has resigned from the board of directors of XL Capital Ltd., a Hamilton, Bermuda-based insurance and reinsurance company. Robert Glauber's resignation came amid conflict-of-interest concerns raised...

Bill would curb corporate-owned life insurance

May 23, 2005

WASHINGTON - Legislation that would ensure that corporate-owned life insurance is sold only to top employees was introduced in the House May 11 with the sponsorship of more than two-thirds of the members of the Ways and Means Committee. The...

New health savings accounts pick up steam

May 23, 2005

NEW YORK - The first statistically meaningful figures on how much money and how many people the new health savings accounts have attracted were released this month. Twenty-one large financial services companies reported $460 million in HSA deposits,...

FBI criminal probe could affect viability of some insurers

May 23, 2005

NEW YORK - The FBI's announcement this month that it is "looking for patterns of fraudulent activity" to determine whether the insurance industry is the "next big one" in the corporate-criminal arena may call into question insurers' business...

Disclosure may hike life insurance distribution costs

May 16, 2005

NEW YORK - Life insurance companies' chief financial officers polled by Towers Perrin's Tillinghast unit said that increased costs caused by more-stringent compensation disclosure obligations are likely to hike product distribution costs. One...

Widow asks court to overturn arbitration ruling

May 16, 2005

BALTIMORE - A court hearing held here last week to try to overturn an arbitration decision provides a look at how difficult the process can be for plaintiffs. Joseph Meyer, an NASD arbitrator and mediator, said: "The court has to see where there's...

Waddell & Reed case helps spotlight pitfalls of the 1035 exchange

May 9, 2005

NEW YORK - The recently announced $18 million settlement of variable-annuity-switching charges involving Waddell & Reed Inc., NASD and state regulators serves as a warning about the care required when advising clients to change annuity insurers....

Life insurance top pick to pre-fund final expenses

May 9, 2005

NEW YORK - Agents use mainly pre-need life insurance, as opposed to annuities, for clients who want to make certain that there is enough immediate cash available at their death to pay final expenses, according to a recent report from A.M. Best...

MetLife sets structured-settlement sales record

May 9, 2005

NEW YORK - Structured settlements increasingly make financial sense for claimants who win large awards in personal injury claims and lawsuits, as evidenced by New York-based MetLife Inc. writing a company record $907 million in structured settlement...

NAIFA opposes creating association health plans

May 2, 2005

WASHINGTON - Insurance advisers are at odds with much of the small-business lobby over legislation that would pave the way for the creation of association health plans. The plans would allow small-business groups to band together to get more...

Investing platform specifically for HSAs uses Schwab products

May 2, 2005

NEW YORK - Recognizing that the medical-savings purpose of health savings accounts often requires a different investment approach than retirement and education savings accounts, Devenir LLC, a two-year-old broker-dealer, has developed an investment...

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