AXA Equitable, New York, N.Y., has announced that it ranked first in variable annuity new sales for the full year 2007, with a 20.2% increase in sales and 4.1% improvement in market share over 2006.

“This 2007 achievement was driven by the entire AXA Equitable organization’s sharp and continuous focus on the financial intermediary. We did this by delivering premier retirement planning and protection solutions,” said James Shepherdson, Executive Vice President of AXA Equitable and President of AXA Distributors, the company’s wholesale distribution organization. “To put this achievement and our momentum in perspective, the company’s $15.5 billion in variable annuity sales in 2007 was three times what it was in 2001, representing a 20% compounded annual growth rate over six years.”

All of the company’s distribution channels contributed to making AXA Equitable the leader in U.S. variable annuity sales.

For the full year 2007, third-party channel variable annuity sales to broker-dealers (wirehouses and regional firms), banks, and independent financial planners increased by 26.3% to $9.5 billion, and market share grew by 4.6% over 2006. AXA Distributors continues to rank first in wirehouse sales, with a 32.7% increase in total sales over 2006, and an 8% increase in market share. The bank channel had the greatest market share gain, with a 29.7% increase in sales and 12% increase in market share over 2006. With independent financial planners, AXA Equitable demonstrated the momentum of an industry leader, with a 31.8% sales increase and 7.2% market share growth over 2006.

AXA Advisors, LLC, the company’s retail distribution channel comprised of career financial professionals, sold $6.3 billion in total variable annuity sales in 2007. AXA Advisors delivered a 10.8% increase in sales and a 2.6% increase in market share over 2006.

“The 2007 VA sales growth generated by retail distribution was outstanding and is evidence that the company’s premier products and services delivered by our financial professionals are meeting the retirement income goals of an increasing number of Americans,” said Andrew McMahon, Executive Vice President of AXA Equitable and Chairman of AXA Advisors.