Net variable annuity sales in the third quarter were $8.8 billion, the highest level since the same quarter of 2007 when sales totaled $8.9 billion, the Insured Retirement Institute announced Tuesday. Variable annuity sales were $39 billion, down 2% from last quarter and up 14% from 2010. Year to date, variable annuity sales are over $118 billion, an 18% increase over 2010.
“The record level of new sales of variable annuities clearly demonstrates that the products are competitive in the marketplace and that they are attracting new investors at an expanded pace,” IRI President and CEO Cathy Weatherford, said in a statement.
Industry-wide sales fell 4% from the second quarter, but increased 6% over third-quarter 2010 sales to over $58 billion.
“The overall strength and growth of the industry is not only underscored by these encouraging numbers, but also that sales are expected to exceed $150 billion for the year. As year-to-date fixed sales remain strong, and on par with 2010 levels, the industry is poised to round out the year on a very high note,” Weatherford (left), added.
Year-to-date sales of fixed annuities fell less than 1% to $58.3 billion. Decreases were more dramatic for other periods, however. From the second quarter, fixed sales fell 7% to nearly $19 billion and year-over-year sales fell 7.3%.