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Brighthouse Continues Push Toward Fee-Based Annuities

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The U.S. Department of Labor may be trying to postpone implementation of its own fiduciary rule standards, but insurers continue to add annuity products designed for a world in which advisor fees may eventually crowd out insurance agent commissions.

Brighthouse Financial Inc. contributed to the flow of new fee-based annuity products this week.

Brighthouse introduced the Brighthouse Shield Level Selection 3-year and 6-year annuity contracts. The company also introduced the Brighthouse Shield Level Select Access Annuity.

(Related: DOL Seeks 18-Month Delay for Fiduciary Compliance)

The 3-year and 6-year products come with no annual fee. The three-year version comes with a three-year surrender charge schedule, and the six-year version comes with a six-year surrender charge schedule. A return-of-premium death benefit is a standard product option.

The Access annuity contract is a simplified Shield Selector product designed specifically to meet the needs of fee-based advisors, Brighthouse says.

The Access annuity has no annual product fee and no surrender charges. Purchasers will have to pay the advisor for advisory services.

Brighthouse will be offering all three annuities through independent distribution partners.

Brighthouse, a company based in Charlotte, North Carolina, previously was the individual life insurance and annuity arm of MetLife Inc. It completed efforts to become a separate, stand-alone company Aug. 4, the company says.

Symetra Adds Two Contracts

Symetra Life Insurance Company has introduced the Symetra Advisory Edge contract and the Symetra Advisory Income Edge contract.

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(Image: Thinkstock)

Both contracts are indexed annuities aimed at fee-based planners.

Symetra, a Bellevue, Washington-based carrier, says the contracts give users access to a JPMorgan ETF Efficiente 5 Index option as well as an S&P 500 Index option.

The Advisory Income Edge contract offers a guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefit.

Pacific Life Shortens Withdrawal Charge Schedule

Pacific Life Insurance Company has introduced the Pacific Index Foundation indexed annuity.

The contract replaces the company’s Pacific Index Choice indexed annuity.

The new contract offers simpler ways to earn interest and shorter withdrawal charge periods, Pacific Life says.

The Newport Beach, California-based company offers contract purchasers access to a guaranteed lifetime income option and an option aimed at holders who hope to pass legacies on to beneficiaries.

Nationwide Adds First Indexed Annuity Aimed at RIAs’ Fee-Based Advisors

Nationwide has introduced the Summit indexed annuity.

The Columbus, Ohio, is describing the contract as its first indexed annuity aimed at registered investment advisors’ fee-based advisors.

The contract gives users access to the J.P. Morgan MOZAIC Index, and it’s the only fee-based indexed annuity that offers access to that index, Nationwide says.

Over the past 18 years, the MOZAIC index has been 78% less volatile than the S&P 500 index, Nationwide says.

Nationwide is distributing the product through its Annexus program for independent distribution companies.

Allianz Life Adds Two Variable Annuity Products

Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America introduced the Allianz Index Advantage ADV Variable Annuity contract and the Allianz Index Advantage NF Variable Annuity contract in May.

The Minneapolis-based Allianz S.E. unit designed the Advantage ADV contract to fit within a fee-based portfolio.

The Advantage NF contract comes with no annual product fee on the index strategies and is designed to appeal to fee-sensitive clients, according to Allianz Life.

—-Read Annuity Rules Should Apply to Investment-Type Life Products: Consumer Reps on ThinkAdvisor.


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