Annuities as an Alternative Fixed Income Allocation?

posted in Advanced Planning Nov 24, 2020


Your mix of clients likely ranges from those who can stomach a lot of risk to those who have an almost unhealthy fear of losses. Understandably, those who are highly risk-averse are typically dissatisfied with the low returns that often accompany conservative investment strategies.

Among those strategies are fixed income allocations in the form of savings accounts, CDs, money market funds and bonds. While these investment options can offer a reliable return with lower risk, it’s often difficult to generate adequate returns to grow wealth or sometimes even outpace inflation. 

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Overcoming 4 Annuity Myths & Misconceptions from Clients

posted in Risk Control Nov 17, 2020

As a financial advisor, you’ve likely talked to many clients about annuities and how they could play a beneficial role in an individual’s overall retirement income strategy. It’s also possible that you may have been met with some objections or needed to provide some clarity between perception and reality.

Your clients may misunderstand how annuities work or have only heard half-truths about the role they could play in a diversified investment portfolio. Your guidance and expertise can help them understand the facts and determine how an annuity might help them reach their retirement goals.

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Focus On Core Values to Achieve Your Goals

posted in Client Relationships Nov 10, 2020


Most financial advisors thrive on the feeling of success that comes from guiding a client through discomfort, helping them stay rational and true to their values as they achieve their goals. Many advisors are also well-acquainted with that visceral feeling of failure and discouragement that comes when a client’s stress or fear of uncertainty affects their decision-making, disrupts their progress and leads them off track.

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Retirement Savings Tips for Clients Who Live Paycheck-to-Paycheck

posted in Retirement Planning Nov 3, 2020


Most Americans are acutely aware of their financial situations. A recent report reflects that 40% of U.S. consumers have had difficulty paying bills in the last year. Others who were unemployed, had reduced work hours, or couldn't work because of an illness were nearly twice as likely to experience a shortfall and live paycheck-to-paycheck.1 In light of recent global events and millions claiming unemployment in the U.S., those numbers could be staggering.

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How Advisors Can Engage Risk-Averse Investors

posted in Client Relationships, Risk Control Oct 27, 2020


Meet Steve and Beth. After the economic collapse of 2008–2009, they couldn’t stomach seeing the financial markets plummet, taking their hard-earned money with it. So they called their advisor, withdrew from the market and cut their losses, vowing never to return. Whenever their advisor tried touching base, he was met with a cold shoulder.

As the economy regained steam, Steve and Beth watched from the sidelines as markets climbed to new, all-time highs. They knew they were missing out on potential gains and wondered if they should consider risking the market again. “Hey Beth, maybe we should contact our old advisor.”

And then the pandemic hit.

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Remember These 3 Employer Retirement Plan Rollover Opportunities

posted in Advanced Planning Oct 20, 2020


There are several reasons for clients to consider a rollover from an employer retirement plan to an IRA at retirement — and in some cases, even earlier. The appeal of a rollover may be supported by a variety of benefits to clients, including (but certainly not limited to):

  • Greater access to their retirement investments
  • Wider selection of investment options (and more choice over costs and fees)
  • Coordination and control of all their investments and retirement planning decisions
  • Ability to choose their own financial advisor
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Economic Commentary: Economy Remains Uncertain Amid Pandemic

posted in Economic Commentary Oct 13, 2020


When it comes to financial markets, all eyes are on the latest happenings tied to the COVID-19 pandemic. Whether it’s weekly jobless claims, corporate earnings reports, global trade, fiscal policies or the potential for a vaccine, markets respond in stride.

Following unprecedented losses and the worst three-month decline on record in the second quarter, the U.S. economy rebounded at an estimated 25% growth rate in the third quarter, the fastest quarterly growth rate on record.

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CUNA Mutual Group Launches Digital Behavioral Finance Advice (BFA™) Advisor Tools

posted in News & Press Oct 8, 2020


MADISON, Wis. – CUNA Mutual Group Annuities is enhancing the advisor-client conversation by introducing a new digital version of the Behavioral Finance Advice approach to investing, which features new tools and client sales aides for advisors.

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Why Advisors Need Behavioral Finance as Much As Clients

posted in Client Relationships, News & Press Oct 6, 2020


If you’re like many financial advisors, you might have studied economics and gotten a business, finance or accounting degree. Or maybe you’re just naturally analytical and have always been good with numbers. Make no mistake, those attributes are definitely a good thing when it comes to managing your clients’ money.

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Social Security Shortfall? Annuities May Be an Answer

posted in Retirement Planning Sep 29, 2020


When you conduct a portfolio review, it’s common practice to factor in investments held outside your firm to help determine your client’s projected income in retirement. In addition to disbursements from an employer 401(k), a pension or other income-generating ventures like rental property, Social Security stands out as a reliable source of future income.

A major concern you’ve likely heard from clients is whether they’ll run out of money in retirement. While Social Security can provide a base income to cover fixed costs like insurance, utilities, food and housing, it may fall short, especially for those who’ve come to expect a certain standard of living. If those individuals also missed out on opportunities to build savings and invest during their working years, the chasm widens. 

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