SEC Summary Disclosure Initiative Benefits Consumers, Life Insurers, Environment

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) unveiled a sensible proposal last year that would: Provide key information about variable life insurance and variable annuities – life insurance and lifetime income tools that reflect movements in stock market – to consumers in a concise and reader-friendly method; Increase awareness and understanding of these vital financial security solutions and enable informed purchase decisions; Benefit the environment by reducing reams of unnecessary paper waste. This proposal, the Summary Disclosure Initiative for Variable Annuities and Variable Life Insurance, almost sounds too good to be true. Actually, it’s all true. And it’s very good: for … Continue reading "SEC Summary Disclosure Initiative Benefits Consumers, Life Insurers, Environment"

Guaranty Associations: A Critical Consumer Protection You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

It’s common knowledge that the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) provides deposit insurance coverage if a bank fails and is unable to meet its obligations. FDIC signs are prominently displayed at every bank to let us know that our deposits are guaranteed for up to $250,000 per person per account category. The financial crisis of 2008 reminded us that while our banking system as a whole is financially sound, banks can, and do fail.  It’s comforting to know that if that happens, the FDIC will protect your savings. But what about when you buy a life insurance policy or an … Continue reading "Guaranty Associations: A Critical Consumer Protection You’ve Probably Never Heard Of"

Financial Professionals Must Consider All Options for Retirees, Including Annuities

Fascinating – and depressing – research from the investment advisory group United Income shows 96 percent of Social Security recipients likely have tapped their benefits too soon. They’re missing out on $3.4 trillion in benefits – an average of $111,000 per household. The research report notes that not everyone should wait till age 70 to start receiving benefits. But for those who can, Social Security will annually boost its payout by 8 percent. Still, too many people are bypassing this option. And as suggested in a Bloomberg News story, “Americans Losing Trillions Claiming Social Security At the Wrong Time,” financial … Continue reading "Financial Professionals Must Consider All Options for Retirees, Including Annuities"

U.S. Senate Needs to Pass SECURE Act

Have you ever worked forever on a jigsaw puzzle, only to discover you’re missing a key piece? If so, then you’ll understand the current frustration among retirement security proponents who have been working to help solve the nation’s retirement puzzle by passing the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act. The bill will help Americans prepare for a secure retirement while resolving a vexing tax problem harming our nation’s military families. The U.S. House of Representatives in May voted 417-3 to pass the SECURE Act, which used the Retirement Enhancement and Savings Act (RESA) as a bedrock. It built … Continue reading "U.S. Senate Needs to Pass SECURE Act"

Washington Examiner Editorial Distracts From How Life Insurers Meet Critical Consumer Needs

America’s life insurers serve 90 million American families, helping them build a financial safety net that protects them through all stages of life. Helping people take care of the things that matter most is our most critical mission. But you wouldn’t know that from the Washington Examiner’s editorial this week about The Business Roundtable’s (BRT) new mission statement. The BRT recently called on corporate leaders to consider all stakeholders including society at large when making decisions. Several members of the American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) signed on to the BRT’s statement. In its editorial, the Examiner insinuated that our industry’s lobbying … Continue reading "Washington Examiner Editorial Distracts From How Life Insurers Meet Critical Consumer Needs"

Life Insurers Help Families with Special Needs Confront Challenges Like ‘Autism Tsunami’

The growing incidence of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) poses significant challenges to both families and policymakers. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 1 in every 59 children in the United States were identified as having ASD in 2014, up from 1 in 150 in 2002. A more recent study published in 2018 in the journal Pediatrics reports that the incidence has increased to 1 in 40, affecting a 1.5 million U.S. children (2.5%) and their families. The growing number of ASD children and teens will soon reach adulthood, sometimes referred to as the ‘Autism Tsunami.’  Every individual … Continue reading "Life Insurers Help Families with Special Needs Confront Challenges Like ‘Autism Tsunami’"

G20 Says Aging Society Is a Priority Issue

People are living longer, and financial security into retirement is not just a challenge in the United States – it’s a challenge facing people around the world. The G20 – an international forum for the governments of 20 major economies – has selected aging society and filling the protection gaps created by increasing longevity as a priority issue. The Japanese G20 presidency will explore best practices for how to increase financial inclusion and fill the gaps in income replacement and retirement security during a period of unprecedented longevity. Japan is building on the foundation begun under Argentina’s G20 presidency, which … Continue reading "G20 Says Aging Society Is a Priority Issue"