Much to Show in the Show Me State

Nov 14, 2023

Missouri farmers are responsible for feeding families and communities, the state, the country and, indeed, the world.

They have a silent partner in their success, as do numerous other industries in the Show Me State. It’s America’s life insurers.

Life insurers currently have nearly $1 billion invested in agricultural mortgages in Missouri. That’s the critical financing for buying or expanding a farm. Not surprisingly, many of these investments are in the state’s agricultural heartland, Southeast Missouri — including Stoddard, New Madrid and Pemiscot counties. Agricultural investments in the state average $4.5 million.

Agricultural mortgages are just one of numerous sectors in Missouri in which the life insurance industry invests. Retail is another — nearly $1 billion in all.

Like investments in agriculture that benefit farm owners and boost employment, retail mortgage investments help shop owners while also promoting job growth. Farmington and Poplar Bluff are just two cities in the state where life insurers have issued retail mortgage loans. The National Retail Federation estimates that retail accounts for 27 percent of the jobs in Missouri.

Life insurers also issue mortgages in the health care industry and residential sectors, including loans made in Cape Girardeau, Jackson and Farmington, for example.

Municipal bonds are major investment areas as well, with education-based loans being a significant sector. Life insurers have nearly $1.7 billion invested today in Southeast Missouri State University, the Jefferson City School District, Rolla School District #31 and more.

Utilities also benefit from industry financing. Life insurers purchased bonds issued by utilities totaling $311 million – financing for solid waste treatment through the Cape Girardeau Industrial Development Authority.

While life insurer investments — $102 billion overall in the state – demonstrate a deep commitment to communities, they are made to provide safe, solid returns for insurers. They help companies pay working families’ life insurance benefits, retirement income, and long-term care and disability income.

Industry investments played a role in helping families make it through tough times following the loss of loved ones. In Missouri alone, life insurers paid out $5 billion – $13.6 million every day – in life insurance and annuity benefits to Missouri families in 2021.

With its proven commitment to hard work and ingenuity, life insurers will continue to invest in Missouri long into the future.

Joyce Meyer

Joyce Meyer was Executive Vice President, Government Relations at the American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI). Meyer was responsible for overseeing ACLI’s federal, state, and international advocacy with a special focus on the financial and retirement security ACLI member companies provide to the families they serve.