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December 6, 2012
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News covering the insurance and financial advising industry

  Top Story 
  • Survey: Life insurers excel in customer retention, personal touch
    The life insurance industry ranks high in retaining customers and customizing its offerings to their needs and preferences, according to a consumer survey by Accenture. The data employed by carriers to deliver that personal experience bodes well for future growth, PricewaterhouseCoopers says. "Increased processing power and smarter analytics will pave the way for more informed prevention, risk selection and premium pricing," PwC says. (12/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
5 Cures for Business Growing Pains
A growing business is a successful business, but it comes with its own set of complications. Growing pains can arise from new employees, added roles and responsibilities, and a premium on office space. Read this informative e-book for five practical tips to managing your growing office space.
  Industry News 
  • Expert: Help clients weather LTCI-premium hikes
    Clients with long-term-care insurance may be surprised to see their premiums rise in response to challenges facing that industry, but the increases can be managed, Michael Kitces writes. Clients can simply pay the increase or cancel the policy, or they can consider a reduction in the daily benefit amount, the benefit period or the benefits inflation rate, Kitces writes. Older long-term-care policies are generally less expensive than a comparable new policy, he notes. Nerd's Eye View blog (12/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Study: New retirees have more resources than previous generations
    New retirees are financially better off than those who retired in previous generations, in part because of the shift to defined-contribution plans, according to a study by the Investment Company Institute. "Recent cohorts of retirees tend to enter retirement wealthier than previous cohorts," the study says. Reuters (12/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Commentary: Customers grapple with buyouts of variable annuities
    The guarantees added to variable annuities to offset the products' risks are being reconsidered by insurance companies, leaving customers and financial advisers with questions on how to proceed, Sheryl Moore writes. Moore notes that three companies have offered cash buyouts to policyholders who voluntarily give up the guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefit, guaranteed minimum death benefit and certain other riders. National Underwriter Life & Health (12/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Report emphasizes simple, informed exchange process
    A report by the Pacific Business Group on Health highlights the importance of a simple enrollment process in order to ensure users of health insurance exchanges are matched with the right plan. Exchanges must balance a simple approach with one that explains options in-depth. "Because we know there are half a dozen things that stand out, that matter to people, so you want to nudge them to consider certain aspects," said Ted von Glahn, a senior director of the group. "But you don't want to curtail their opinions or needs. You have to give people choices of what they want to choose." California Healthline (12/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Investment Trends 
  • Commentary: "One portfolio" option attracts 401(k) participants
    Investors who are overwhelmed with the investment choices presented by their 401(k) plans increasingly are choosing the default "one portfolio" option, Christopher Carosa writes. The approach limits the amount of due diligence required of plan sponsors, although it can complicate their efforts to identify "one portfolio" offerings, he writes. (12/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Policy Watch 
  • Proposal may hurt 401(k) contributions, expert says
    A government proposal that would pose limits on employee 401(k) contributions could be particularly harmful to lower-income and older workers and lead some business owners to shutter their plans, says Brett Goldstein of American Investment Planners. The "20-20 cap" would limit employee contributions to the lesser of $20,000 or 20% of pay, he said. If it is approved, "people are going to have to look for alternative methods of saving for retirement," such as IRAs and annuities, Goldstein said. AdvisorOne (12/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Building Your Business 
  • How to plan for retirement despite income volatility
    Workers who have fluctuating incomes, such as artists, musicians and entrepreneurs, can still plan for retirement, experts say. They need to focus on savings and living below their means, and they should maintain separate bank accounts for their personal and work finances, according to advisers. They might also consider part-time jobs that would provide a steady steam of income. Financial Planning (12/2012) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  NAIFA News 
  • In the wake of Sandy, agents make a difference
    Superstorm Sandy, which made landfall on the coast of New Jersey on Oct. 29, resulted in 131 fatalities and up to $22 billion in insured losses in the U.S. Many NAIFA members, along with their families, friends, neighbors and clients, felt and continue to feel the impact of the storm. Across the region, people looked to their insurance agents for guidance and assistance. Stories by two NAIFA members illustrate the important role insurance agents played in helping their clients along the road to recovery from Sandy's devastation. Read more at the NAIFA Blog. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • LILI -- committed to advancing your personal growth, business practices and professional skills
    LILI, a six-month leadership development course offered exclusively to NAIFA members, is a curriculum that includes creating a business plan, exploring tools to improve your practice and techniques to enhance interpersonal relationships -- all for a fraction of the cost of other certificate programs. LILI is perhaps NAIFA's best-kept secret. For more information, visit LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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Why always 'not yet'? Do flowers in spring say 'not yet'?"
--Norman Douglas,
British writer

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