Forty-nine indexed annuity carriers participated in the 70th edition of Wink’s Sales & Market Report, representing 99.8 percent of indexed annuity production.
Total fourth quarter sales were $11.9 billion. Fourth quarter indexed annuity sales were up 4.0 percent when compared to the previous quarter, and up 3.5 percent when compared with the same period last year.
As long as interest rates remain low, these new, nontraditional distributions will continue to force indexed annuity sales upward. These new outlets helped indexed annuity sales reach a sixth consecutive record-setting year in 2014. That topped last year’s record by more than 21 percent.
Noteworthy highlights for the 4th quarter include Allianz Life maintaining their position as the #1 carrier in indexed annuities, with a market share of 25.5 percent. American Equity Companies held on as the #2 carrier in the market; Security Benefit Life, Great American Insurance Group, and Athene USA followed-up in sales, rounding-out the top five. Allianz Life’s Allianz 222 Annuity was the #1 selling indexed annuity for the second consecutive quarter.
Guaranteed Lifetime Withdrawal Benefit (GLWB) utilization showed a decline, just as second quarter 2014 did. Proprietary GLWB data provided survey participants with specifics on rider elections and commencement by age. GLWB election rates continue to seesaw each quarter. Anyone that thinks that the income sale is king in this low interest rate environment needs to check out our data.