An insurer has increased the flexibility of one of its annuities.

American General Life Insurance Company, Houston, a unit of American International Group Inc., New York, says it is introducing an optional death benefit rider for purchasers of its AG HorizonIndex equity indexed annuities.

Consumers now can choose between the standard death benefit, which pays the full annuity value as a stream of payments, or the new death benefit rider, which lets the beneficiary receive the annuity value in the form of a lump sum, American General says.