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Life Health > Health Insurance

The 9 biggest announcements from life and health insurers this week

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On May 19, 2015, at the Olmstead Center at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, W. Harold Petersen was inducted into the Iowa Insurance Hall of Fame. A pioneer of and advocate for the disability insurance industry, Petersen was one of five insurance professionals honored during the Iowa Insurance Hall of Fame’s 19th annual ceremonial dinner. W. Harold Petersen was born, raised and began his insurance career in Council Bluffs, Iowa. After moving his family to Southern California in 1967, Petersen founded a brokerage firm with a focus on traditional and specialty disability insurance, named Petersen International Underwriters. As an MGA for several of the country’s top carriers, he set records in sales and standards for the industry. Subsequently, Petersen developed a successful relationship with the Lloyd’s marketplace that has forever shaped the world of high-limit disability insurance in the United States. After more than 33 years, Petersen International Underwriters remains the largest Lloyd’s Coverholder in the American disability insurance market

The National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA) announced that its Board of Trustees has named Kevin M. Mayeux, CAE, as the Association’s next chief executive officer, effective July 1. Mayeux, 45, is executive vice president, chief officer for North American operations and general counsel for the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA), an international professional society with 185,000 members throughout 190 countries. In his leadership capacities, Mayeux oversaw more than 100 staff members at the Altamonte Springs, Fla., location. He will relocate to the Washington, D.C., area to manage operations from NAIFA’s headquarters in Falls Church, Va. As CEO of NAIFA, Mayeux will oversee a staff of 58 in Falls Church. He will manage all external affairs of the Association, including relationships with life, health and financial service companies, other industry organizations, legislators and regulators. Internally, Mayeux will manage day-to-day headquarters operations, provide support and advice to NAIFA’s Board of Trustees and committees, coordinate Federation activities, and oversee NAIFA’s operating policies and procedures. Mayeux succeeds Dr. Susan B. Waters, who served as CEO from 2010 until her passing in December 2014.

MetLife announced the launch of its new Premier Accumulator Universal LifeSM (PAUL) product. Designed to offer increased flexibility, the new option provides both death benefit protection and access to high early cash value accumulation to help policyholders meet a variety of financial goals. Clients, including small business owners, who choose PAUL, can enjoy several benefits including: access to more cash value, faster than traditional life insurance policies; competitive cash value accumulation; a non-correlated asset; low surrender charges; and enhanced rate plus. PAUL also offers financial professionals the potential to earn compensation through an asset trail based on the cash value, which differs from traditional life insurance products, making it one of the few with this structure in the life insurance industry.

A new kind of USAA life insurance benefit designed for millennial members to easily increase coverage as their lives change. The Term Life Events Option provides term life insurance policyholders with the ability to increase their coverage by $100,000 without additional underwriting. New policyholders have the option to take advantage of the benefit following a qualifying life event such as marriage, birth of a child or buying a home. The Term Life Events Option is available for new USAA term life insurance policies issued to members between the ages of 18 and 35. USAA estimates that more than 20 percent of its members in that age group have children, get married or purchase homes every year. The additional coverage option can be exercised once within the first ten years of the policy at an average additional cost during the level premium period ranging from $8 to $25 per month.

Wink, Inc. (originally known as celebrated their 10-year anniversary on May 27th, 2015. Wink is an intelligence firm behind the one of the industry’s sources for annuity and life insurance product information,’s AnnuitySpecs and LifeSpecs analysis tools. Wink also distributes Wink’s Sales & Market Report, a source of indexed insurance product sales and trends. Wink founder Sheryl J. Moore has worked in the research and development of indexed life & indexed annuity markets for over 16 years and is committed to advocacy of the life insurance industry. Demand for the website was growing and Sheryl needed a partner-in-crime. Victoria L. Peterson quickly stepped-up to the plate, who serves as the vice president of operations for Wink.

The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America® (Guardian) announced that International Planning Alliance, LLC, with headquarters in Bloomfield and Shrewsbury, New Jersey, was its top-performing agency for 2014. The President’s Cup is awarded to the agency with the best overall performance in terms of production, recruiting, agent development, training and persistency in the prior year. International Planning Alliance, LLC is a financial services firm that specializes in business and estate planning for executives and helps guide families and individuals with their insurance, investment, and legacy planning. The agency helps maximize wealth and lower risk for their nearly twenty thousand clients primarily based in New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut. The firm handles over $300 million of assets administered, according to a press release. International Planning Alliance, LLC was co-founded in 1999 by Gerald J. Clericuzio, CLU, ChFC and David Alter, CLU. Today, there are 65 Financial Representatives associated with the agency. During that time, the agency focused on hiring, training and developing its associates to be skilled in the protection and accumulation of wealth, investments, executive benefits, employee benefits, business planning, and estate planning specialties.

LIMRA is hosting its second annual Big Data Analytics Conference, June 24–26, 2015, in Boston, to help financial services executives learn best practices and case studies around Big Data. The conference’s keynote presenter will be Eric Siegel, Ph.D., founder, Predictive Analytics World, who will discuss using predictive analytics for marketing and to lower costs. David Silverstein, president and CEO, BMGI, also a general session speaker, will talk about the continued need for human intelligence amid the new onslaught of information. Workshops will focus on data analytics, data warehousing and predictive modeling and how to leverage these tools, in marketing, underwriting, claims, and distribution. The conference will be held at the Seaport Hotel and World Trade Center in Boston. Those who register before June 4 will receive a discount. To learn more and register online, please visit: LIMRA 2015 Big Data Analytics Conference.

Lincoln Financial Group (NYSE:LNC) has introduced the newest addition to its suite of Indexed Universal Life (IUL) insurance products, Lincoln WealthAdvantageSMIndexed Universal Life. The new offering provides advisors flexibility in how they help clients achieve specific goals related to wealth protection and legacy planning, tax efficient income or business needs. Lincoln WealthAdvantageSMoffers three death benefit options including a previously unavailable option on Lincoln IUL policies, which provides a death benefit equal to the policy face amount plus premiums paid. Lincoln WealthAdvantageSM  is available, subject to state approval, with the Lincoln LifeEnhance® Accelerated Benefits Rider (ABR). The Lincoln LifeEnhance® ABR is designed to provide access to tax-advantaged funds in the event of an unexpected permanent chronic or terminal illness. Lincoln WealthAdvantageSM  IUL is immediately available to Lincoln’s national network of distribution partners (in states where approved). For more information on the product, visit the Lincoln Financial Group website.

New York Life has announced that Douglas A. Wheeler has been elected a senior vice president in its Office of Governmental Affairs. He continues to report to senior vice president in charge of the Office of Governmental Affairs, George Nichols III. Wheeler joined New York Life in 2011 and is responsible for overseeing all state government relations activities for New York Life. Prior to joining New York Life, Wheeler was the director of the Division of Insurance at the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance. The Division serves as chief regulator of the New Jersey life, health and property-casualty insurance markets, issuing licenses to insurance companies and producers, reviewing insurance products and rates for compliance with existing regulations, and monitoring the financial solvency of companies in the marketplace.  

In other New York Life news, the company also announced that Yie-Hsin Hung, 52, has been named chief executive officer of New York Life’s asset management subsidiary, New York Life Investment Management LLC (NYLIM), effective immediately. Hung reports to Chris Blunt, president of the Investments Group, which includes all of New York Life’s asset management businesses, totaling more than $500 billion in assets under management. NYLIM is a multi-boutique investment management firm providing a wide array of fixed income, equity and alternative investment capabilities and solutions to a broad range of institutional and individual investors around the world. Its strategy has been very successful, with third party assets tripling in the last five years to $289 billion in assets under management at year-end 2014. Hung was previously co-president of NYLIM. As CEO, she replaces Drew Lawton, 56, who has decided to retire at the end of this year.  


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