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Nationwide Increases Retention Levels

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Another life insurer has decided to increase the amount of mortality risk it will keep on its own books.

Nationwide Financial Services Inc., Columbus, Ohio, says it is increasing the maximum amount of permanent life insurance coverage it will retain for insureds ages 25 to 70 to $10 million per single-life policy, up from $5 million.

The retention limit for second-to-die and last-to-die policies will increase to $15 million, from $8 million, Nationwide says.

Nationwide also will automatically bind a policy up to $50 million for individual life products and up to $60 million on survivorship life products, with a jumbo limit of up to $65 million, the company says.

The increases do not apply to term contracts.

Nationwide is the second life insurer to announce a major increase in retention limits this summer.

The life arm of Hartford Financial Services Group Inc., Hartford, reported in July that it has doubled the retention limits at its own permanent life operations.

Increasing retention limits will help Nationwide improve service for wealthy clients and make life easier for the agents who serve those clients, Nationwide says.