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Prudential Introduces Its First Indexed Variable Annuity: Annuity Matters

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Prudential Financial Inc. has introduced its first siindexed variable annuity contract, or “registered index-linked annuity” (RILA).

A RILA often gives purchasers more ability to benefit from investment market gains than a typical, non-variable indexed annuity does.

A RILA also offers only a limited amount of protection against investment-market-related losses.

(Related: Prudential Shifts Focus to Variable Life and Buffered Annuities)

The protection limit exposes purchasers to the possibility of loss of principal, but it also protects the issuer from having to take on unlimited guarantee risk.

Prudential is calling its “registered indexed linked annuity,” or RILA, the FlexGuard contract.

Prudential started by introducing the commission-based version of the product Monday. The company plans to add a fee-based version later this year.

Purchasers of the commission-based version can decide how wide of a buffer against market losses they want. The purchasers can also determine how long investments stay in place, and what kinds of growth strategies they want to have.

Prudential is also introducing another annuity, the Fixed Annuity with Daily Advantage Income Benefit.

The contract combines access to a guaranteed, lifetime stream of income with a set income benefit growth rate.

“The longer an individual waits to take income, the greater their future retirement income can be,” the company says.

Prudential issues annuities through Pruco Life Insurance Company of Newark, New Jersey, and through Prudential Annuities Life Assurance Corp. of Shelton, Connecticut.

“All are Prudential Financial companies, and each is solely responsible for its own financial condition and contractual obligations,” Prudential says in the product disclaimers.

In other annuity news:

Lincoln Financial Group has added two features to its Lincoln Level Advantage indexed variable annuity contract.

One of the features is a new performance trigger option. The trigger option is available with a one-year term, 10% level of protection.

“The option is meant for investors who want to know what rate their investment will earn in an up or flat market, regardless of index growth rate — ultimately providing more predictability for their investment,” Lincoln said.

Lincoln also recently introduced a new one-year term option with a 20% level of protection.

Lincoln first introduced the Lincoln Level Advantage annuity contract in May 2018. About 7,000 financial professionals have sold Lincoln Level Advantage contracts, and about a third of those financial professionals have been new to doing business with Lincoln, the company says.

“The product continues to gain momentum in the marketplace, with additional distribution partners and expanded advisor reach in 2020,” the company says.

Lincoln issues the variable annuities through the Lincoln National Life Insurance Company.

“All contract and rider guarantees, including those for optional benefits, payment from the indexed accounts, or annuity payout rates, are subject to the claims-paying ability of the issuing insurance company,” according to the standard disclaimer at the bottom of the product announcement. “They are not backed by the broker-dealer or insurance agency from which this annuity is purchased, or any affiliates of those entities other than the issuing company affiliates, and none makes any representations or guarantees regarding the claims-paying ability of the issuer.”

RetireOne, an insurance and annuity back office company, has formed a partnership with Fiduciary Exchange LLC (FIDx), the platform that supports the Envestnet Insurance Exchange.

RetireOne helps registered investment advisors with planning, researching products, managing transactions after the transactions have been executed, acting as agent of record, and creating necessary client reporting within the platforms they already use.

Now that the FIDx relationship is in place, RetireOne can reach annuities through the Envestnet platform, RetireOne says.

— Read Sales of Index-Linked Variable Annuities Shine Again, on ThinkAdvisor.

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