An insurer has released a new product designed to provide an alternative source of retirement income for those aged 55 to 75.

The product, Annuity Note, promises a lifetime income of 5% based on the higher value of either the total amount invested or the contract’s anniversary value after 5 years, according to John Hancock Financial, Boston, a unit of Manulife Financial Corporation, Toronto.

If no withdrawals have occurred by the 5-year anniversary, at worst the annual income would be 5% of the initial contract payment. If market growth has increased the contract’s value after 5 years, then the annual income would equal 5% of the 5-year value, says Hancock.

Investors will receive the income monthly, and its payment is guaranteed for life.

John Hancock says investors will be given complete access to their money, while the annual all-in expense is 1.74%, along with an insurance fee of 1.2% and a 0.54% expense from the underlying portfolio.

Annuity Note, available to both qualified and non-qualified accounts, has a front-end load sales charge of 3% and an annual expense of 1.74%.

Its minimum initial investment is $25,000, and investors can add subsequent payments until 9 months after purchase, Hancock says. It is not available in all states.