Processing a new variable annuity contract costs an average of about $182, compared with an average cost of about $161 for a new fixed annuity contract.

Consultants in the New York office of Deloitte Consulting L.L.P. have published that finding in the firm’s latest annuity contract expense benchmarking study, which draws on data from 15 participating insurers.

Median operations costs are about $123 per new VA contract processed and about $72 per new FA contract processed, the consultants estimate.

The participants’ median in-force administration expense is about $43 per in-force VA contract and about $25 per in-force FA contract.