2019 Annuity Index Performance Comparison

In many cases, once a person decides he or she likes the idea of using an index annuity they always want to find the best annuity for maximum performance.  As much as I tell people the strategy is more important than the product, there are plenty of people who dig a deep hole by comparing […]

The True Cost of Volatility

Gains in the stock market are great but losses create stress. It’s high times on Wall Street right now and any painful experiences of the past are distant memories for most people. Even so, volatility is the top concern for a majority of people who are exploring the possibility of using annuities in retirement. Most […]

How Fees Affect Investment Performance

Volatility is probably the biggest concern of most people I meet, but fees may be just as bad for total performance.  Paying fees for any type of investment or manager is palatable for some and not for others.  There are several ways a fee can erode investment gains but the highest cost may not be […]

Case Study: Wealth Accumulation with Annuities

I talk a lot about how my strategies are different so this week I’m going to show you a real-life example.  Not all recommendations were my idea in the beginning.  I learn as much from my clients as they learn from me.  As cheesy as it may sound, teamwork is the key to financial success […]

What if an Insurance Company Goes Bankrupt?

Tons of people ask this question and those who don’t are probably thinking about it.  Annuities are supposed to be safe so what happens if a company fails?  Most people understand that every state has a guaranty fund for insurance contracts but there’s a lot that needs to happen before that even comes into play.  […]

Why I Like Annuities

There may seem to be an obvious explanation but then again maybe not.  It’s not at all because of how much money can be made, although more than one person has declined to do business with me simply because each thought I would be making too much money on the deal.  Being able to make […]

How to Get out of an Annuity

Much of the work I do and the strategies I have created are based on debunking popular myths about annuities.  Not all contracts do what Ken Fisher warns against and most people trashing the products are only trying to sell magazines or another financial product.  Everything has a negative side so you have to keep […]

Making the Decision to Buy Annuities

There are a lot of times when a person doesn’t make a financial move they should have.  Every single person I talk to has a story about a missed opportunity.  That’s not as bad as when someone makes a financial move they should not.  In the world of annuities that happens too often and that’s […]

The Best of Annuity Straight Talk Newsletters

Three or four unfinished drafts are sitting in the newsletter folder and most of the time I can’t decide what I plan to send out for the week.  Recent stories and misguided objections gave birth to this weekly exercise just about a year ago.  Since then hundreds regularly read this email and many of those […]

The Relevance of Index Annuities Today

Last week I wrote about the wild year we are having in terms of not only what we see on the news but also how that has been affecting retirement portfolios.  The title if you recall is “A Wild 2019 and How Annuities Fit.”  More than one person commented that I failed to tell everyone […]

A Wild 2019 and How Annuities Fit

This year so far has certainly had its share of ups and downs.  In some ways it could be viewed as a microcosm of the issues one might face throughout all the years of retirement.  It’s summer time and I stepped away from writing for a few weeks because I figured no one would notice.  […]

Index Annuity Performance from the Past Year

At times it seems as though everyone talks about yield as if they are able to get the highest possible growth from every asset they own.  I’ll admit that may just be my perspective because it often comes in the context of my recommendation to use an annuity to reduce risk without sacrificing growth potential.  […]

Even Advisors Ask for My Advice

In some ways I consider it a waste of time but it happens often enough that I’ve realized it validates the information I provide.  This website and all the newsletters are meant to help consumers but there are plenty of advisors as well who are looking for answers to the same questions.  And it makes […]

The Myth of Annuities and Liquidity

The thought of not having access to retirement assets is one of the biggest issues people have with annuities.  I think it’s funny when investment advisors, who have no intention of every giving up management of a person’s assets, claim that if you buy an annuity you will lose control of your money forever.  As […]

How Technology Benefits Retirement Planning

It’s never more evident than when you talk to kids growing up today.  Younger generations take for granted easy access to information that can still seem like magic for anyone who remembers a rotary telephone.  I appreciate the convenience it adds to my life while trying to make sure it doesn’t run my life. Technology […]

Does Anyone Have Too Much Money to Use an Annuity?

It’s a great question that I got a few weeks ago during a meeting and it stumped me for just a second.  Dianne and Fred have saved more than enough for retirement and their income needs are modest in comparison to the total portfolio value.  They are also young, both under the age of 60, […]

More Important Than Money in Retirement

One benefits of picking my brain that many people don’t realize has nothing to do with asset management or annuity shopping.  I’ve talked to hundreds of people just like you.  I hear stories of both failure and success or good choices and bad.  My recommendations are not only based on what I know about retirement […]

How to Beat a Guaranteed Income Contract

During Preparation for a meeting this week I was running numbers and comparing options for a couple in California.  They had recently been to a dinner seminar to get some answers to retirement questions.  Of course the follow-up meeting included an annuity pitch so they decided to do some research online to verify whether they […]

Index Annuities That Grow When the Market Drops

Timing is a deciding factor for a lot of people.  Interest rates and stock market performance keep people locked in to current holdings and nervous about making changes.  If rates were higher many would find it easier to shift toward protecting assets.  Instead there are those who hang on to old habits and currently have […]

Why I Call It The Flex Strategy

Regardless of your expectations when you first hit the website, you should know by now that I try to get everyone to think about annuities differently.  Most of you come here with a general interest in annuities, trying to find a solution to a specific problem.  If I join the chorus and just stick with […]