Prudential Financial Inc. says its U.S. individual annuity sales climbed to $2.2 billion in the third quarter, up from $1.3 billion in the third quarter of 2017.
Mark Grier, the vice chairman of the Newark, New Jersey-based company, said Thursday that the increase was due partly to “thoughtful pricing strategies.”
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Prudential’s emphasis on financial wellness has also helped increase individual annuity sales, Grier told securities analysts, during a conference call.
The individual annuity business “has a role in our wellness initiative,” Grier said.
The opportunity to put information about retirement income products on the company’s wellness platform has been important for Prudential, Grier said.
In spite of the increase in U.S. individual annuity sales, operating earnings for the U.S. individual annuities unit fell. Grier said the decrease was due partly to an increase in variable selling costs.
It was not immediately clear from Grier’s remarks and Prudential’s earnings release whether the increase in variable selling cost reflected changes in compensation for agents, wirehouses or other parties involved in annuity sales and distribution efforts.
Prudential held the conference call to go over its third-quarter earnings.
Prudential as a whole is reporting $1.7 billion in net income for the latest quarter on $14 billion in revenue, compared with $2.2 billion in net income on $13 billion in revenue for the third quarter of 2017.