Annuities have become a very popular choice for investors, savers, and those looking to secure guaranteed income that they cannot outlive. Annuities have evolved into financial vehicles that can help individuals save safely for retirement and earn interest credits that are linked to key stock market indexes, without the fear of loss due to market volatility. In years where the market
has gains, policyholders can get interest credits for the gains up to certain limits, or Caps, but in years when the markets decline, policyholders will not experience any loss. This type of annuity is called a Fixed Index Annuity.
Prior to the advent of the Fixed Index Annuity, individuals seeking guaranteed lifetime income had to Annuitize their annuity contract, meaning they would trade a lump sum of money for a stream of income, either for life or for a certain period of time. By annuitizing the contract, policyholders have to surrender their right to access the funds placed into the policy, in exchange for the promise of income payments from the insurance company. But now, policyholders can obtain guaranteed lifetime income and maintain access to their account value using Fixed Index Annuities that have a guaranteed lifetime income rider feature.
Types of Annuities
There are two basic types of Annuities: Fixed and Variable.
Fixed Annuities can be either Fixed Rate Annuities, where the interest rate is a stated, pre-determined rate for a period of 3, 5 or 7 years, or a Fixed Index Annuity where the interest credits are linked to the returns of key stock market indexes, but can never be negative. Both Fixed Rate Annuities and Fixed Index Annuities provide guarantees that the account will never drop in value due to stock market fluctuations.
Variable Annuities are a product of the insurance and the securities industry. They provide policyholders with direct access to the stock and bond markets via professionally managed subaccounts. As such, policyholder funds are directly invested in the markets and values will fluctuate with market gains and losses. The fee structures are laid out in the carrier product prospectus. Equis Advanced does not market Variable Annuities.
For more information on how Fixed Rate and Fixed Index Annuities might work for you, contact Equis Retirement Solutions by emailing equisadvanced@EquisFinancial.com.