NU Online News Service, April 12, 2005, 3:01 p.m. EDT

The Guardian Insurance & Annuity Company Inc., New York, has introduced a guaranteed minimum withdrawal benefit option.[@@]

The company, a unit of the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, is selling the new AssetAccess rider along with its Investor Income Access, Investor Asset Builder and CXC variable annuities.

Guardian Insurance is promising that rider purchasers who meet certain conditions can get back all of their premium payments in the form of partial withdrawals.

Clients who buy the AssetAccess rider can take out up to 5% of their guaranteed withdrawal balance each year, Guardian Insurance says.

Rider purchasers can increased the “guaranteed withdrawal balance” to equal the contract’s current accumulation value starting on the fourth contract purchase anniversary.