Sales of indexed annuity products drove American International Group’s Retirement Income Solutions Group to another record quarter, Jay Wintrob, CEO and president of AIG Life & Retirement at American International Group, Inc., said today during AIG’s earnings conference call.
A key driver of the increase was the fact that nearly half of AIG index annuity sales in the second quarter included guaranteed lifetime income riders, he said.
The performance of AIG’s life unit prompted CEO Robert Benmosche to say during the conference call today that, “Life and Retirement continues its excellent run, as we’re becoming a stronger and stronger competitor in that space.”
Wintrob and Benmosche’s comments during the earnings call came as the company prepares for Peter Hancock, currently head of AIG’s property and casualty operations, to also assume the role of CEO from Benmosche effective Sept. 1. Hancock opened the conference call by saying, “There will be no abrupt change in strategy.”
The changing of the guard occurred as AIG reported a strong quarter that beat estimates. It reported that operating earnings, which do not include realized capital gains and losses from its investment portfolio and other items, increased 11 percent to $1.83 billion, or $1.25 cents a share, from $1.7 billion, or $1.12 a share.
The report marked another step away from the crisis mode the former insurance industry behemoth endured as it and the federal government dealt with an ill-advised move the company made away from its core insurance business with a huge investment in credit default swaps that sent into the hands of the taxpayer from 2008 until 2012.
Hancock said he will retain control of the property and casualty insurance business for the time being, and “committed” himself to “remaining very transparent with our shareholders as we fine tune and refine our strategy going forward.”
He added that, “I remain very committed to focusing on value versus simply bulking up the volume of the company.”
In opening the conference call with analysts, Benmosche noted that this “will be my last call. It’s been a five-year period of lot of excitement and this quarter reflects a lot of hard work on behalf of all of the people of AIG,” Benmosche said. He added that they started off with a daunting task of stabilizing the company, “then paying back America and we’ve done that with a profit.”