Measuring tape (Image: Alexander Bedrin/Thinkstock)

Here’s one sign of how big of a deal investment indexes now are in the world of U.S. life insurance and annuity products: Wink Inc. says it will be offering an index-based sales report.

(Related: Annuity Index War May Reveal a Data Gap)

The Des Moines, Iowa-based company has been publishing life and annuity product sales data since 1997.

In recent years, consumer groups, policymakers and some financial professionals have complained about the difficulty of getting complete, detailed, standardized information for some indexes.

Critics have argued that, in some cases, issuers might be using consumers’ difficulties with understanding and comparing indexes to avoid having to include the actual or potential impact of the 2007-2009 Great Recession in illustrations of past index performance.

Wink says it will now publish an investment index product report that will give details such as the launch date for each index, the ticker symbol for each index, the insurance companies that use each index in their life and annuity products, and sales of products tied to each index by year and quarter.

Wink is developing the investment index report mainly because the product makers themselves have been asking for index-based market information, Wink says.

— Read Insurers Ask NAIC to Ease Annuity Index Illustration Age Ruleon ThinkAdvisor.

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