Clients still insist on guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefits, a survey by Phoenix Companies found. The report, released Tuesday, found 70% of annuity professionals said GLWBs were “must-have” features on the annuities they’ve sold over the past 12 months.
By comparison, just 11% of respondents said a combination of benefits were a must-have feature in annuities, and just 6% of respondents said their clients were demanding principal preservation income riders.
They expect demand to rise over the next 12 months, though. Looking ahead, 37% of respondents said that over the next 12 months, GLWBs will be the only must-have feature on annuities, while a quarter said there would likely be a combination of benefits in high demand.
The need for guaranteed income is certainly driving client demand; 62% of respondents said that need is why their clients are demanding certain benefits. However, 24% of respondents said their clients were trying to address multiple needs with one product.
“This survey shows that the need for guaranteed income in retirement continues to be a top priority for consumers and the annuity professionals who advise them,” Mark Fitzgerald, national sales manager for Saybrus Partners, Phoenix’s distribution subsidiary, said in a statement. “That’s just part of the story, however. More and more, consumers are looking to meet other needs, notably accumulation and chronic care benefits, and would like the ease of a combination annuity product that does it all.”
A third of respondents said they would like to see accumulation features added to annuities, and 28% said they wanted income guarantees. Almost a quarter identified chronic care benefits as an important rider they would add to annuities if given the opportunity.