Security Benefit Corporation, Topeka, Kan., launched its Total Value Annuity, a fixed indexed annuity offered exclusively through Advisors Excel, Creative Marketing, Gradient Financial and Impact Partnership.

The Total Value Annuity was designed to protect retirement savings and provide interest on those savings. Built with three different interest crediting options, Security Benefit’s newest product offers a fixed interest rate option or performance based interest results from the S&P 500 Index and/or the 5 Year Annuity Linked TVI Index. Annuity owners can choose to allocate all of their money to one interest crediting option or any combination of the three.

In other industry news:

AIG Benefit Solutions, Neptune, N.J., introduced Income PLUS, a new rider to its Group Long-Term Disability Insurance that provides a one-time, lump-sum payment in the event of a disabling condition.

The Income PLUS benefit is not offset or negated by any other sources of income, and is paid in addition to the monthly benefits offered under the long-term disability product. It can be used by employees as they see fit to help pay debt or medical bills or to provide a financial cushion during a period of disability.

Payable immediately after the 180-day elimination period is satisfied, Income PLUS offers what amounts to 12 months’ worth of benefit at 10% to 40% of income, paid as a lump sum in addition to the monthly LTD payments. The percentage paid under the rider varies according to the rider option selected by the employer. The total income replacement maximum available to employees is 80%, including the underlying LTD plan and the Income PLUS rider benefit.

 

Assurant Employee Benefits, Kansas City, Mo. (NYSE: AIZ), developed a set of online modules that compare how the indexing methods and offsets of various plans affect disability benefits.

The new offset and indexing tool includes three user-friendly modules, including return to work offsets, Social Security offsets and indexing. Each module includes email functionality so brokers and employers can easily share the information with others.

“Disability insurance can be complicated, yet is extremely important to a disabled individual’s livelihood,” said Scott Horstman, disability product manager, Assurant Employee Benefits. “Employees primarily want to know if their claim will be approved, how much they will receive and for how long. This tool helps answer those questions and simplify disability plans before purchase so brokers and employers can make informed decisions about the best disability plan features to meet their needs and those of their employees.”

 

Multi-Bank Securities Inc., Southfield, Mich., a fixed-income securities broker-dealer, has been approved to underwrite debt securities for the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) through their ACCESS program.

“Although we have always offered Fannie Mae securities to clients, the underwriting approval allows us to customize specific bond structures to meet our clients’ specific investment requirements,” said Michael Drews, president, Multi-Bank Securities. “This designation compliments the services we already provide our clients and enhances our ability to expand our distribution.”

 

Symetra Life Insurance Company, Bellevue, Wash., appointed Curt Olson as vice president and head of relationship management for registered investments.

In this new role, Olson will build and manage the distributor network for Symetra’s planned variable annuity (VA) offering. His responsibilities include negotiating selling agreements, developing joint business objectives and providing day-to-day management for key distributor accounts. He reports to Kevin Knull, senior vice president of registered investments at Symetra.

Olson most recently served as senior vice president and national relationship manager at Sun Life Financial Distributors Inc., where he led a team responsible for VA sales across multiple channels. He previously held sales and product management positions at MFS Investment Management, Dain Rauscher Inc. and Kemper Financial Services.

 

Peng Chen, president of the investment management division for Morningstar Inc., Boston, Mass., (NASDAQ: MORN) joined the Curriculum Advisory Board for the retirement management analyst (RMA) designation.

Created by the Retirement Income Industry Association (RIIA), a distinguishing characteristic of the RMA designation is the scientifically based retirement income planning curriculum and examination. RIIA and the RMA program are dedicated to serving the financial services industry, including defined contribution and retail distribution organizations, investment managers, financial advisors, broker dealers, banks and insurance companies. Individuals earning the RMA designation are prepared to deliver retirement income solutions and services to clients who want a secure income stream and ongoing professional management throughout their retirement years.

As president of Morningstar’s investment management division, Chen is responsible for overseeing the company’s investment consulting, retirement advice and investment management operations in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.