New York Life, the No. 1 seller of fixed-rate annuities with one of the largest career agency distribution networks, reported record 2017 operating earnings of $2.06 billion compared to $1.95 billion in 2016, the company said Tuesday.
Annuity sales rose to a record $13.8 billion from $12.8 billion in 2016, the company said.
Insurance sales in 2017 rose 4 percent to $1.3 billion over 2016, and it was NY Life’s 21st consecutive year of life insurance sales growth, the company added.
Individual life insurance in force rose to $993 billion from $957 billion in 2016.
Surplus and asset valuation reserve rose to $24.1 billion from $23.3 billion in 2016, the New York-based company said.
“These results again validate New York Life’s business strategy, which pairs our market-leading life insurance and agency franchise with a diverse set of supporting businesses, all aligned with the interests of our policy owners,” said Ted Mathas, chairman and CEO of NY Life, in a news release.
A $1.8 billion dividend payout in 2018, up 36 percent since 2012, was also the largest in company history.
NY Life is a mutual insurer, owned by policyholders, and the company distributes products through a network of 12,000 agents.
“Personal guidance, delivered by the dedicated and diverse agents of New York Life, remains at the heart of our business model,” said John Kim, president of NY Life.
NY Life sells annuities, term and whole life, long-term care, mutual funds, group membership coverage and specialized business coverage, and earlier this month announced a new advertising campaign that emphases flexibility in its products.
Value Whole Life, a new lower-premium whole life product launched earlier this year, is aimed at pre-retirees.
The payment for Value Whole Life for a 50-year-old woman in the best risk class could be as much as 24 percent lower than standard whole life insurance policies with a similar decline in cash value growth, the company said.
Whole life new premium ended 2017 flat compared to 2016, LIMRA’s U.S. Retail Individual Life Insurance Sales Survey reported this week.
Whole life premium is forecast to rise 2 percent this year and 4 percent in 2019, LIMRA forecasts.
Overall life insurance premium rose 1 percent in 2017 compared to 2016, but fell 1 percent in the fourth quarter compared to the year-ago period.
InsuranceNewsNet Senior Writer Cyril Tuohy has covered the financial services industry for more than 15 years. Cyril may be reached at [email protected].
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