Product Analytics

#221 | Reconciling FIA and IUL

One of the curious things about the life insurance industry is how little crossover there is between the life insurance side and the annuity side in terms of advisors, brokerages and even life insurers. Most agents who do significant volume…

#213 | The Zero Credit Test

For the first time in a while, the specter of consecutive 0% credits in Indexed UL products looms as a result of the recent selloff in equities. But what does that mean for the long-term performance of the products? As…

#210 | The Opportunity in the Captastrophe

All indexed accounts may be created equally with general account yields and call options, but not all indexed account options are priced equally. Right now, there are screaming deals in non-cap indexed account options at life insurers that have been…

#207 | Indexed UL’s Honeymoon Decade

I was recently copied on an email chain amongst a bunch of high-end agents and industry commentators including a prominent, long-time and relentlessly self-promoting Indexed UL advocate. Most of the folks on the email chain are generally skeptical of Indexed…

#203 | Interpreting the IUL Benchmark Index

Since I started publishing the IUL Benchmark Index back in January of last year, a lot of folks have asked me how they should interpret the results. This is a very reasonable question that I should have thought to answer…

#192 | The Curious Case of the Structured Annuity

If you’re even a passive observer of the annuity market, you’ve probably noticed that a new product category has burst onto the scene in the past 5 years and is quickly gobbling up share against traditional variable annuities (VAs) and…

#186 | The Best Whole Life Product is…

Evaluating Whole Life is devilishly tricky. Dividend Scale Interest Rates are not necessarily comparable across carriers. Policy charges are not explicitly disclosed. Each policy has a different premium to death benefit ratio. Policy loan rates and provisions vary between companies.…

#183 | Picking an Indexed Crediting Strategy

I’m often asked which indexed crediting strategy is the “best” one. The answer, of course, depends on your perspective. If you believe that hypothetical historical backtesting (such as the AG49 maximum rate methodology) is a reliable indicator of the intrinsic…

#178 | The Dark Art of Setting Indexed UL Caps

In theory, setting a cap in an Indexed UL product should be straightforward. The life insurer earns a yield for the portfolio of assets backing the product, scrapes off a cut and then goes to market with the remaining amount…

#175 | Proprietary Index Performance – Part 2

So far, we’ve been looking at proprietary indices through the lens of their continuous investment characteristics – in other words, what are the index values in any given day relative to one another? Using that lens, proprietary indices generally appear…

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