Annuities & Problems Of Longevity

As the director of research for The BAM Alliance, I frequently receive questions related to the advisability of purchasing payout annuities (as opposed to variable annuities, which I generally categorize as products meant to be sold, not bought).

Combine the relatively poor performance of equities since 2000 (the S&P 500 returned just a little more than 4% and the MSCI EAFE index returned less than 3%) and the fact that current bond yields are at exceptionally low levels with concerns about Social Security’s solvency and the demise of defined benefit plans (then add in longer life expectancy), and it’s no wonder investors are seeking alternative strategies to ensure they’ll have sufficient assets to support their desired lifestyle in retirement. Given the importance of this issue, and how often I’m asked about it, I thought I would share my thoughts.

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