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Types of Annuities: Is Variable or Fixed Index Better?

Thursday, September 28th, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Financial Planning Tips, Retirement Income Annuities

Of the types of annuities, which is better, the fixed annuity or the variable annuity?As you explore your retirement options, you’ll likely encounter more than a few investment strategies.

Whether you’re close to retirement age or years away from it, making smart decisions at the onset is critical to reaping the most reward when that time comes.

Yet, with so many choices and so much jargon surrounding the industry, it can be difficult to determine exactly which path is the best one for you. From different types of annuities to IRAs and 401(k)s, there’s no shortage of places to put your money — if you can discern which place is best.

That might be why, according to a new survey, Americans revealed they’re less confident about their retirement earnings today than they were just one year ago.

One way to boost that assurance? Learn as much as you can about the choices you’re presented.

So let’s start simple. Read More

What is a fixed index annuity?

Thursday, September 7th, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Financial Planning Tips, Retirement Income Annuities, Uncategorized

What is a fixed index annuity?A question we hear quite often is, “What is a fixed index annuity?” It’s a very valid question because fixed index annuities are unique among the various types of annuities and are a little hard to understand. So to answer the question, we’ll throw in a little history, give you the formal definition, elaborate on how to use them to build your retirement savings, and explain how they offer guaranteed income for life. Let’s get started.

Annuities have been around for a long, long time, dating at least back to the Roman Empire. Around A.D. 225, Romans used an “annua” to pay their soldiers. Annua were lifetime stipends paid once per year instead of paying soldiers a lump-sum at the time of their retirement. “Annua” is a Latin word which means “annual payments.”

The fixed index annuity, however, is a much more recent invention. Read More

Compare the Best Annuity Companies

Friday, July 7th, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Retirement Income Annuities, Uncategorized

Compare the Best Annuity CompaniesWhen considering buying an annuity, one thing you’ll certainly want to keep in mind is that an annuity product guarantee is only as good as the financial strength and claims-paying ability of the issuing insurance company. Therefore, you will want to compare the best annuity companies and take great care when choosing an annuity provider.

At Annuity Watch USA, we fully understand your need to research annuity providers, so we’ve put together some great tools to help you compare annuity companies and make the best choice possible for your annuity purchase. Read More

Our 7 Point Retirement Planning Checklist Has You Covered

Friday, June 16th, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Financial Planning Tips, Retirement Income Annuities, Videos

Do you have a retirement planning checklist that is up-to-date? Unfortunately, most people don’t, and what’s worse, they don’t even have a retirement plan in the first place. Here is our 7-point retirement planning checklist: Read More

Annuity Payout Rates

Friday, June 2nd, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Retirement Income Annuities

Annuity Payout Rates Explained by Annuity Watch USAIn our last article, we talked about growth guarantees that help maximize the income value of Fixed Index Annuities. With income in mind, let’s shift our focus to annuity payout rates.

One of the most important things to look for when considering the purchase of a fixed index annuity is the annuity payout rate. Why? The payout rate is the #1 key to maximizing your retirement income potential. So, you’ll want to get a solid grasp on the concept of payout rates, but if you have any questions that are not answered in this article, please contact us for more info and we’ll be glad to help. Read More

Annuity Growth Rate Guarantees

Thursday, May 18th, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Financial Planning Tips, Retirement Income Annuities

Annuity Growth Rate GuaranteesSo far in our series on retirement annuities, we have discussed many aspects of annuities, especially the fixed index annuity. We have covered the four types of annuities, fixed index annuity basics, principal protection, and multiple annuity crediting methods including point to point, monthly sum, and monthly average. Next, in our series, we will discuss annuity growth rate guarantees.

Over the past several years we have seen the stock market go pretty much all over the map…everywhere from 50% downturns to record highs…and everywhere in between. And who knows where it’s going to go next?! Read More

Retirement Annuity Monthly Average Crediting Method

Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Financial Planning Tips, Retirement Income Annuities, Uncategorized

Monthly Average Crediting Method for Fixed Index AnnuitiesAs we continue our series on retirement annuities, we will now explore another crediting method which is called monthly point to point, also known as monthly average crediting.

As a reminder, there are three types of market index crediting methods used in Fixed Index Annuities – Point to Point, Monthly Sum, and Monthly Average. Your contract may have variations of one, or all three available for you to choose from.

In monthly average crediting, the insurance company records the value of the index you’ve chosen to track once each month. This snapshot of the index is taken on the day-of-the-month your contract was issued. At the end of the contract year, they take an average of the monthly values, and then compare it against the index’s value seen at the beginning of the contract year. Read More

Inflation-Protected Annuity Q&A with Cathy DeWitt Dunn on U.S. News & World Report

Tuesday, April 25th, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Retirement Income Annuities, Uncategorized

Inflation Protected AnnuityWith people living longer and spending an average of 18 years in retirement, inflation has the potential to wreak havoc on your retirement plans unless precautions are taken.

Let’s say for illustration purposes, that your current monthly expenses are $3,000 a month. Did you know that in 10 short years, your monthly expense will top $4,000 a month based on a 3% annual inflation rate? In 18 years, that same $3,000 a month expenses will exceed a staggering $5,100 a month after adjusting for inflation. If you are one of the many who spend 25 years in retirement, your expenses will more than double, topping $6,200 after calculating for inflation. Read More

Retirement Annuity Crediting Methods – Monthly Sum

Monday, April 17th, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Financial Planning Tips, Retirement Income Annuities

Retirement Annuity Crediting Method - Monthly SumIn our series on retirement annuities, we have previously covered the four types of annuities, fixed index annuity basics, principal protection, and one of the types of annuity crediting methods – the point to point annuity crediting method. In this article, we will discuss another crediting method called monthly point to point, which is also known as monthly sum crediting. Read More

Point to Point Annuity Crediting Method

Wednesday, April 5th, 2017 and is filed under Annuity News, Retirement Income Annuities

The Point to Point Annuity Crediting Method ExplainedA question we hear quite often is, “How does a fixed index annuity make money?” That’s a great question because there are a lot of options available when it comes to how your Fixed Index Annuity will earn money. These options are called crediting methods.

In this article, we will focus our attention on the Point to Point crediting method for fixed index annuities. In upcoming posts, we will discuss the monthly sum and the monthly average crediting methods. Read More