Forty-four indexed annuity carriers participated in the 59th edition of AnnuitySpecs.com’s Indexed Sales & Market Report, representing 99% of indexed annuity production. Total first quarter sales were $8.0 billion, down just under 3% from the previous quarter. As compared to the same period last year, sales were up more than 13%.
“It is not surprising that indexed annuity sales are up over 2011, while annuity sales in general are down,” said Sheryl J. Moore, President and CEO of Moore Market Intelligence, the firm that owns AnnuitySpecs.com. “No other lifetime income product is as strategically-positioned to thrive in this low-interest rate environment. In fact, the indexed annuity is well-suited for any market environment.”
Worth noting this quarter was the fact that Allianz Life maintained their position as the #1 carrier in indexed annuities with a 17% market share. Aviva maintained their position as the second-ranked company in the market, while American Equity, Fidelity & Guaranty Life, and Great American (GAFRI) rounded-out the top five, respectively. Allianz Life’s MasterDex X was the #1 selling indexed annuity for the 12th consecutive quarter. Driving sales of indexed annuities, Guaranteed Lifetime Withdrawal Benefit (GLWB) elections were elected on nearly 56% of total indexed annuity sales this quarter. The riders are increasingly being utilized to guarantee income- more than 10% of indexed annuity owners that had elected a GLWB rider are actively taking guaranteed lifetime income payments under the endorsement today.
For indexed life sales, 46 insurance carriers participated in the AnnuitySpecs.com’s Indexed Sales & Market Report, representing over 99% of production. First quarter sales were $255.9 million, a decline of over 20% as compared to the previous quarter. As compared to the same period in 2011, sales were up nearly 34%.
Ms. Moore remarked, “I have long anticipated that indexed life would have its day in the sunlight.” She went on to comment, “In just a sixty-day period before the close of 2011, I had SEVEN new insurance companies enter the indexed life market. I’ll have everyone’s attention as a result of companies entering the market by the close of 2012.”
Items of interest in the indexed life market this quarter included Aviva recapturing their former #1 position in indexed life, with a 13% market share. AXA Equitable took the position as second-ranked company in the market, while AEGON Companies, Pacific Life Companies, and Allianz Life rounded-out the top five companies, respectively. AXA Equitable’s Athena Indexed UL was the #1 selling indexed life insurance product for the fourth consecutive quarter. Average target premiums on indexed life increased to $7,702 for the quarter.
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The staff of Moore Market Intelligence has over a decade of experience working with indexed insurance products. The firm provides services in speaking, research, training, product development, and marketing of indexed annuities and indexed life insurance. Their knowledge in product filing research and policy forms analysis, coupled with their unmatched resources in insurance distribution, give them the expertise to provide competitive intelligence that allows carriers to stay ahead of their competition.
Sheryl J. Moore is president and CEO of this specialized third-party market research firm and the guiding force behind the industry’s most comprehensive indexed life and indexed annuity due diligence tools, AnnuitySpecs.com and LifeSpecs.com. Ms. Moore previously worked as market research analyst for top carriers in the indexed life and annuity industries. Her views on the direction on the indexed market are frequently heard in seminars and quoted by industry trade journals.
Ms. Moore is the author of the quarterly AnnuitySpecs.com’s Indexed Sales & Market Report. Serving as the insurance industry’s #1 resource of indexed insurance product sales since 1997, this report provides sales by product, company, crediting method, index, distribution, surrender charge period, and more.