Total U.S. sales of individual annuities climbed to $63 billion during the first quarter, up 9% from the total for the first quarter of 2007.

Sales of all individual fixed annuities rose 31%, to $21 billion, and sales of individual indexed annuities fell 2%, to $5.6 billion.

Sales of individual variable annuities crept up 1%, to $42 billion, LIMRA says.

Although sales of indexed annuities were down slightly, sales of other types of fixed annuities were up, and sales of market value adjusted annuities were up 50%, to $2.4 billion, LIMRA says.

FA sales growth exceeded VA sales growth for the first time since the third quarter of 2006, LIMRA reports.

FA contracts sold well partly because FA crediting rates dropped only slightly, while bank certificate of deposit rates dropped sharply, LIMRA says.