AIG Introduces Index Annuity Powered by GLB Rider Option

American International Group, Inc.’s AIG business, AIG Life & Retirement, recently rolled out an index annuity — Power Index Premier NY.

The new index annuity is the only one in New York that offers a living benefit rider option and has been designed for exclusively to benefit the state’s residents. AIG, which already has Polaris Variable Annuities with Lifetime Income Max and the Assured Edge Income Builder NY Fixed Annuity under its annuity portfolio in New York, will be offering a comprehensive suite of annuities with the newly launched Power Index Premier NY backed by a rider option.

What makes this guaranteed living benefit (GLB) riders noteworthy is that it guarantees lifetime income while taking care of the escalating retirement costs. Same is the case with the GLB rider, which is exclusively offered with Power Index Premier NY, as it also assures lifetime income to increase every year for up to 15 years.

Moreover, the new annuity has several advantages, which include higher growth returns on the back of a varied range of index interest accounts and assured lifetime income for retirees. It also provides shield to the principal amount of its clients in case of any financial turmoil. All these features are offered without any annual fees. Notably, index annuities offer several advantages and thus have emerged as a feasible investment option amid the market uncertainties induced by the COVID-19 pandemic.

We believe the latest move by AIG Life & Retirement particularly bodes well as it comes at a time when the entire U.S. economy is grappling with financial woes. The current financial turmoil induced by the pandemic has only aggravated financial insecurities of the retirees. A recent research by the Alliance for Lifetime Income found that while 70% of pre-retirees are worried about their financial securities in future, a meager 33% of them have assurance of sufficient income to meet their retirement expenses.

Thereby, we believe that the new index annuity bodes well as it is likely to alleviate financial burden of retirees.

Similar Initiatives Amid Current Volatility

Prior to the latest move, AIG had introduced another index annuity this June — AQR DynamiQ Allocation Index. This annuity, being conceived by AQR Indices, intends to generate higher consistent returns and has strong risk management abilities.

It had also rolled out X5 Advantage in collaboration with Annexus in May. The company has always been focused on offering long-term retirement benefits to retirees. In the same month, AIG Life & Retirement rolled out Legg Mason Quality Dividend Index for The Power Series of Index Annuities that focuses on high quality dividend paying stocks to generate greater and consistent returns amid market volatility. Such initiatives are likely to drive results for the company’s Life & Retirement segment going forward. Notably, the segment has been performing well as evident from 8.6% growth in its revenues for the first half of 2020.

However, shares of this Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell) multiline insurer have lost 45.4% in a year compared with the industry’s decline of 20.2%.

Nevertheless, we believe the company’s strong fundamentals are likely to drive its shares going forward.

Stocks to Consider

Some better-ranked stocks in the insurance space are Sun Life Financial Inc. SLF, American Equity Investment Life Holding Company AEL and Manulife Financial Corporation MFC, each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Sun Life Financial, American Equity and Manulife have a trailing four-quarter positive earnings surprise of 11.58%, 56.31% and 6.79%, respectively, on average.

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