About Secondary Market Annuities And Taxes


Many customers inquire about Secondary Market Annuities and taxes.  The original underlying Structured Settlement is a tax free award to the original annuitant.  Because of this, annuity carriers do not issue 1099′s to the recipients or to subsequent assignees.

Now before you jump for joy, read on….

Federal law and IRS guidelines per IRS 5891 outline how, in a properly structured transaction, a buyer becomes the assignee of an existing payment stream by means of qualified order.  The Buyer of a Secondary Market Annuity in a properly structured transaction as we do here at Annuity Straight Talk holds the contractual right to the payments.

So while under current IRS regulations buyers will not received a 1099 for the income they receive, this does not mean it’s tax-free.

Secondary Market Annuities Taxation:

Even though the original payee does not receive a 1099, subsequent investors do have a cost basis in the payments and a gain, and therefore are responsible for income taxes.

The taxation of income from Secondary Market Annuities held in non-qualified  accounts is up to the taxpayer and their tax adviser to declare.  Generally annuities are considered ordinary income and the ratio of income to principal is calculated using an exclusion ratio to determine (exclude) from income that amount of each payment that is return of principal.  Refer to the following IRS rules for guidance and consult your tax adviser for specific questions.

How To Calculate The Exclusion Ratio:

Obviously, investors have a basis in an SMA investment, and a gain on that investment.  The typical way to calculate the gain is to utilize an exclusion ratio for determining the principal and interest component of each payment.

Let’s look at an example of an exclusion ratio.  Assume the investor paid $100,000 and will receive $200,000 over 100 payments of $2000 each.  The exclusion ratio is 50%- Exactly 50% of each payment would be income, and 50% is return of principal.  Consult your adviser, but generally, this income is “ordinary income” for IRS purposes.

Alternative Methods:

There are other ways to reflect a payment stream where you use an amortization schedule, and one will be provided with your purchase on any Secondary Market Annuity.

This method however treats the SMA like a loan (and you are the lender) and recognizes interest income predominately in early years, and principal in latter years.   This may not be beneficial for you.

At this time, it’s our understanding you can use either the amortization method, or the  exclusion ratio method, to calculate your taxes. But be sure to consult your own tax adviser.

Secondary Market Annuities and Amortization Schedules:

The software we use in the SMA industry is called T-Val  and is used for calculating present value and discounted notes, as well as amortization tables for loans. With each SMA purchase, you will receive an amortization schedule produced by TVal that shows the principal and interest portion of each payment under the amortization method.

You can also refer our site for a discounted cash flow calculator.

The exclusion ratio is more intuitive than the amortization table.  Feel free to view this article for more information on the exclusion ratio, in plain English and not tax-speak!

Other Tax Considerations:

In the case of factored lottery cases, taxes are withheld by the state lottery commission for state and federal taxes, and you will file for an applicable state and federal refund for the taxes withheld on that portion of your payment which is return of capital (basis).

Secondary Market Annuities & Taxes Summary:

So even though investors do not receive a 1099 for the payments from the carriers based on current tax law, what happens in the future to tax law is anyone’s guess.  Some may use an amortization schedule to calculate gains, and others use the exclusion ratio.

We at Annuity Straight Talk LLC do not offer tax advice, and this page is for general information only, so please be sure to consult your own tax adviser for more info.

Frequently Asked Questions About Secondary Market Annuities


Frequently Asked Questions About Secondary Market Annuities

Secondary Market Annuities come from structured settlements, which  originate as a result of  a court case whereby an individual wins an award and elects to take their payments over time.  These payment streams typically include guaranteed monthly payments and/or guaranteed lump sums designed to accommodate the payee’s life circumstances in the future.

Why People Sell Structured Settlement Annuities

Quite simply, people’s circumstances change.  When individuals with Structured Settlement Annuities seek to sell their future payment streams for cash today, they approach a financing company who applies a discount to the future payment streams and offers a lump sum to the payee. When individuals sell their right to receive payments under a structured settlement, a Secondary Market Annuity is created. They represent one of the best ways to capture higher yields in a safe money investment.

When a seller and the financing company have an agreement, the company commences its underwriting of a specific case.  They investigate the credit of the seller, any alimony, bankruptcy, or other liens, and a file with the court that originally awarded the payee the settlement to amend the court order.  This is to comply with the provisions of Federal laws contained in the 2001 bill HR2884 and  IRS Code Chapter 55, section 5891, relating to a transfer subject to a Qualified Order.

As a case is researched and proofed, it is marketed to select firms.  We are unique as we work with, a wholesale vendor who buys these payments directly into a business trust when they become available.  Other vendors of SMA’s market on a “Best Efforts” basis and have no control over the process, quality, or even the existence, of the payments.

With the DCF Exchange inventory, a business trust is the named buyer, and this trust name is entered into the various documentation and court order relating to the transfer.  Some of these documents are public record, so using the trust acts as an important confidentiality buffer and represents a key element of why our process is superior to other transfer methods.

Once a case is approved in court, and all the documents relating to the transfer of payment rights are compiled, the documents are sent to counsel for review.  As we market cases in both a pre-order and in stock manner, capital may be extended by the wholesaler to purchase a case if it is not reserved prior to this point.

The legal counsel reviews all documents to ensure everything is in order. Once reviewed, we provide a full and complete  closing book and only after doing so are your purchase funds required within 48 hours.

Prior to closing, the closing book consisting of your payment stream, the transfer and assignment agreements, the court order and an acknowledgment from the annuity issuer all documenting the transfer, is compiled and sent to you.  You’ll have 48 hours to complete the transaction by wiring funds to close the case.

Secondary Market Annuities and Taxes

The taxation of  income from factored Structured Settlements is  up to the taxpayer and their tax advisor, and depends if the Settlement is held in a qualified IRA or not.  Federal law and IRS guidelines outline how,  in a properly structured transaction, a court order shows a buyer as the assignee  of the payments by means of  qualified order.  This is the court process we follow at AST.

While under current IRS regulations you as the new assignee of a factored structured settlement case will not received a 1099 for the income you receive, this does not mean it’s tax-free.  Please refer  to the following IRS rules for guidance and consult your tax advisor for specific questions.

In the case of lottery payments, state and federal taxes are withheld from the payments from the state lottery commission, and you will file annual tax returns that would include a  request for refund for the taxes withheld on the portion of your payment stream that was return of principal.

We’ll outline a few common Q&A questions below.

What Is A Secondary Market Income Annuity?

A Secondary Market Income Annuity (SMIA) is the resale of an existing annuity income stream, either from an Immediate Annuity, a Factored Structured Settlement, or a Lottery Prize Payout contract. The pre-defined income stream and specific terms of the offering is sold for a lump sum payment and thereby transferred from the current recipient of the income to the Buyer.

Is This Investment Right For Me?

If you are looking for an investment that can provide above average returns for the fixed income portion of a balanced portfolio and are in a financial position to hold an illiquid investment with a specific income/return structure, you should consider Secondary Market Annuities.

What Are The Benefits Of Secondary Market Annuities?

SMIAs guarantee you a payment stream over a specific period of time, at a fixed rate of return.  This investment is generally considered to be a good vehicle for “safe money” savings.  Annuity Straight Talk only offers SMIAs from those insurance companies that are highly rated by Standard & Poor’s for claims paying ability, making the Secondary Market Income Annuities we offer one of the safest forms of fixed term purchases available today.

Yields on Secondary Market Annuities are higher simple because the seller of the payment stream is willing to sell at a discount for cash today.  You benefit from that discount and get a higher yield on the cash flow as when compared to comparable annuity products available in the open markets.

 What Is The Yield On A Secondary Market Annuity?

Yields on Secondary Market Annuities vary and are generally related to the length of deferral.  For example, an offer with a 10 year deferral period would have a higher interest rate than an immediate income offer.  A long term lump sum offer will have a higher long term, compounding yield.

Secondary Market Annuities simply costs less to purchase the same income stream.

Can I Transfer Or Sell These Payments Later On?

We can facilitate the re-sale of payments you own due to the  unique procedures we follow, but the transfer rate at the time you sell will be market based.  There is no early surrender option or liquidity option, so it’s best to consider Secondary Market Annuities as generally not liquid or marketable.

Who Makes The Payments to Me?

SMIA payments are made to the payment servicing partner, ASG, who makes the payment to you.  We utilize a payment servicer to facilitate liquidity and to provide you with quick close, in stock inventory.  The Asset Servicing Group is a nationally recognized payment servicer providing millions of dollars of monthly policy service on thousands of policies.  ASG at no time has any ownership or control of your funds, they merely act as a recipient lockbox and forward you payment as you direct, to you, you heirs, or a new owner if you re-sell the payments.  Payment servicing carries a nominal cost that varies with each case and is shown in our SMA Buyers Guide.

Why Work With Annuity Straight Talk?

Each transaction we handle is subject to a rigorous review by an attorney.  The due diligence and unique procedure followed protects each individual buyer to the fullest.  Attention to each case sets us apart from everyone else in the industry in protecting you, the customer. The transaction process has been designed to protect the Buyer.

In addition, all costs of the transaction are built into the price- other than the account servicing costs above, there are NO hidden fees, monitoring costs, account fees, or ancillary charges.  In the case of Life Contingent annuities, the purchase price INCLUDES life insurance coverage for the entire payment cycle, AND Gap insurance covering the first two years of the contract.  This is all factored into the purchase price and handled prior to closing by our team, and designed to protect your interests.

What Is A Typical Term And Purchase Amount?

The present value of a Secondary Market Income Annuity is generally between $50,000 and $500,000 but can be higher or lower. Terms can range from 1 to 35 years but typically are 5 to 20 years.

Why Are SMA Rates Higher?

The rate of return on a SMIA is typically higher than the rate available on annuities newly purchased directly from insurance companies today because an SMIA has been previously owned and has attributes, such as payment term and payment amounts, that cannot be changed.

Additionally, an SMIA is transferred for the present value of future income payments. The present value is determined by what the Annuitant, or the Seller, will accept and what a Buyer will pay.

Can I Purchase Secondary Market Annuities With My IRA?

Yes, most Secondary Market Annuities can be purchase with IRA money.  A self directed IRA is required and we can assist you setting up a self directed IRA with a custodian familiar with the Secondary Market Annuity marketplace.

It’s important to note that Self Directed IRA’s do have nominal fees- we have three preferred IRA custodians, please contact us for more details.

Are All SMA Payments Serviced?

Yes, all payments we deal with are serviced, through ASG, ( Asg is a market leading payment servicer servicing thousands of policies in the life settlement and SMA space. All our cases are serviced by ASG for 3 good reasons

  • ASG is a top quality servicer- in about 30% of cases from other companies and brokers you will have payment servicing thrust on you at the 11th hour without warning, from lower quality companies, which is far worse.
  • As the IRS requirements of code sec 5891 (which deals with the transfer of structured settlements) are rigid, insurance carriers will only adhere to the assignee named in the court order, and will not accommodate subsequent re-transfer. As the Business Trust is the named buyer and all cases are purchased prior to an end investor being identified- we must use a servicer to facilitate reassignment and liquidity
  • Our ability to sell the payment to you means you have the ability to sell it to someone else- that is the primary benefit of servicing. Assignment to an heir, a third party, or to a trust or a child, is easy with a servicer and impossible with a direct assignment from a carrier.

In short, servicing costs are nominal and largely borne by our company with the account setup, so it’s generally not material on the yield. As to risk, we took all measures possible to align with the best in class.  In sum, the benefits of servicing far outweigh the nominal cost and slight hassle of an extra step in the process.

Calculating Effective Rate in Secondary Market Annuities


Investors often have confusion about the rate of return used in annuities in general and in Secondary Market Annuities in particular.  So to clarify a few terms, we’ll walk through Nominal and Effective rate and the concept of Net Present Value and Discounted Cash Flow.

Please note, all our SMA cases are shown with an effective rate.  You should also refer to this page about Secondary Market Annuity Rates

Effective Rate:

Effective rate, Internal Rate of Return, and Annual Percentage Yield are three terms to describe the same thing for these cases. The effective rate is the yield of the series of cash flows, including the investment (negative) and payments (Positive).

You can calculate this using the XIRR function in MS excel or HP handheld calculators, and we use a program called T-Value.

Nominal Rate

Nominal interest rate is also defined as a stated interest rate. This interest works according to simple interest and does not take into account the compounding periods.  So for example, if you have a mortgage with a 4% rate, 4% is the nominal rate, but the actual Effective Rate (Yield) to the mortgage lender will be different, because of the compounding period of the loan.

Nominal Rate Vs Effective Rate

Effective interest rate, or APY, is a more accurate reflection of the yield of an investment as it includes the compounding periods during a payment plan. It more accurately can be used to compare two investments with different compounding periods like week, month, year etc.

Often times, the stated or nominal interest rate is less than the effective rate. However, the effective rate depicts the true picture of financial payments because it includes the compounding period.

Interest Rate and Time

As shown in the example below, interest rate is only meaningful in the context of time and the compounding period. Most often, when people say an interest rate it’s with the assumed context of “per year.”

An annual interest rate is also called the nominal interest rate, or Annual Percentage Rate (APR)

There are other compounding periods available however- common options are month, week, or day.

The yield of an investment with compounding other than annual will be different than the nominal rate. This is the Effective Interest Rate, or Annual Percentage Yield (APY).

Time Value of Money Example

Discounted cash flows involve the concept of Time Value of Money- a dollar tomorrow is worth less than a dollar today. How much less? That requires the ‘Discount Rate’ to calculate, and discount rate and effective rate are synonymous for these investments.

$100 in 1 year at a 10% discount rate will cost $90.91 today. A $90.91 investment today at a 10% Effective rate with annual compounding will yield $100 in 1 year. The annual compounding is critical- the nominal and effective rate are both 10% in this example, with annual compounding.

But if monthly compounding is used, the investment is the same $90.91, the Effective (APY) is the same 10%, but the Nominal rate, or APR, is 9.56%

The Effective Interest rate is also equivalent to the Internal Rate of Return, or IRR. To calculate in MS Excel, use the formula XIRR=((payments),(dates),0). This formula calculates the discount rate, or effective rate, or a given series of payments on definite dates. XNPV may also be used to solve for the purchase price of a series of payments on definite dates at a known discount rate.

Please note, all our SMA cases are shown with an effective rate.  You should also refer to this page about Secondary Market Annuity Rates where you can download example illustrations in Excel an see a video of how these payments are calculated.

What’s With The Secondary Market Annuity Rates?


I’ve fielded several emails and calls recently from investors confused about the rates shown on our inventory of Secondary Market Annuities.  Secondary Market Annuity rates all too often leave investors and advisors alike confused because unlike most other types of annuities, SMA rates are actually quite simple.  Chances are good you are over-thinking the problem!

What Is The “Best Annuity Rate’?

There is no one ‘best’ rate because that is an opinionated term, but in many other types of annuities you have a wide range of rates to contend with and you should calculate mortgage payment to prevent trouble in the future.  Index annuities have a ‘rollup’ rate and a “crediting rate”, and immediate annuities aoften show a ‘payout rate.

But Secondary Market Annuity rates are simple- an SMA simply has an effective rate.  Effective rate is the true measure of investment performance, and it is equivalent to an Internal Rate of Return or Annual Percentage Yield (APY).  This is a true, mathematical calculation.

Now, on certain immediate income cases we also display a ‘payout rate’ which is designed to simply give a comparison to immediate annuities.  Payout rate is nothing more than the annual income over the investment amount- eg, invest $100,000 and receive $1000/ mo, and you have $12,000 per year or a 12% payout rate.  As I said, this is only shown on immediate income cases as a comparison to immediate annuities, which are quoted in payout rates.

So now lets dispel some of the confusion with a walk-through of effective rate.

About Effective Rate In The Secondary Market Annuity:

Effective rate, Internal Rate of Return, and Annual Percentage Yield (APY) are three terms to describe the same thing for these cases. The effective rate is the yield of the series of cash flows, including the investment (negative) and payments (Positive).

You can calculate this using the XIRR function in MS excel or HP handheld calculators, and we use a program called T-Value.  You can read on or, pause a few minutes and watch a video of me using Tval to calculate price.

(To go full screen, click the square in the bottom right corner of the video)

Effective Rate in Secondary Market Annuities

Effective rate also takes into consideration the return of principal with each payment. For example, with Secondary Market Annuities, if you have 100 equal monthly payments, a portion of each payment is principal and a portion is interest. When you receive principal back with payment #1, the next compounding period has less of a base of principal to work with, therefore payment #2 has slightly less interest and slightly more principal. This is how an amortizing mortgage works also.

Nominal Rate:

Nominal interest rate is also defined as a stated interest rate, Annual Percentage Rate, and APR. This rate does not reflect the true yield on the investment or loan because it does not take into account the compounding periods.

For example, your mortgage might have a 4% nominal Annual Percentage Rate. However as you pay down the principal, more money is returned to the lender, thus their Annual Percentage Yield or Effective Rate, is higher than the 4% Nominal Rate.

Nominal Rate Vs Effective Rate

Most likely you have seen APR and APY disclosures on mortgage loans and credit card offers. Often times, the APR, or nominal interest rate is less than the effective rate. However, the Effective Rate depicts the true picture of financial payments because it includes the compounding period and any return of principal.

Effective Rate is the true measure of the yield of an investment.

Here’s a further explanation of Calculating Effective Rate in Secondary Market Annuities

Interest Rate and Time

As shown in the example below, interest rate is only meaningful in the context of time and the compounding period. Most often, when people say an interest rate it’s with the assumed context of “per year.”

But there are other compounding periods available – common options are month, week, or day.

It’s important to note that the Effective Yield to you as an investor in Secondary Market Annuities in a case with compounding other than annual will be different than the nominal rate.

Time Value of Money Example

Discounted cash flows involve the concept of Time Value of Money- a dollar tomorrow is worth less than a dollar today. How much less? That requires the ‘Discount Rate’ to calculate, and discount rate and effective rate are synonymous for these investments.

Here’s a simple example:

$100 in 1 year at a 10% discount rate will cost $90.91 today.

A $90.91 investment today at a 10% Effective rate with annual compounding will yield $100 in 1 year. The annual compounding is critical- the nominal and effective rate are both 10% in this example.

But if monthly compounding is used, the same investment of $90.91 results in $100 in 1 year, and the same Effective Rate (APY) of 10%, but a Nominal Rate (APR) of 9.56%. The payments are the same, but the rates are different because of the compounding period.

Now lets look at a slightly different example:

You borrow $98,770.17 with a 10 year amortizing mortgage with a 4% nominal interest rate and monthly compounding. You make 120 monthly payments of exactly $1000/ month. Your total payments are $120,000.

The nominal rate on the mortgage is 4%, but the lender’s Effective Rate or APY 4.074%.

This type of payment stream is just like an SMA, but you are the one receiving the payments. Your Effective Rate is 4.074%, your investment is $98,770.17, and you have 120 monthly payments of $1000.

Calculating Effective Rate For Yourself

The Effective Interest rate is also equivalent to the Internal Rate of Return, or IRR. To calculate in MS Excel, use the formula XIRR=((payments),(dates),0). This formula calculates the discount rate, or effective rate, for a given series of payments on definite dates. XNPV may also be used to solve for the purchase price of a series of payments on definite dates at a known discount rate.

Click Here for an Excel sheet of the example above. Now, because of slight variations in the timing of amortization credits, TVal and Excel end up with slightly different values and XIRR may vary by a few thousandth’s of a point. The SMA industry and the lending industry all use TVal in their calculations.

Finally, we have (at great expense) a web based discounted cash flow calculator on this site you can use to verify any payment shown on the inventory page.  Just Click Here to use the web based Discounted Cash Flow calculator.

Are Secondary Market Annuities Safe?


Many prospective investors ask, “Are Secondary Market Annuities Safe”

In fact, the annuities that back the payment streams an investor purchases when buying Secondary Market Annuities are among the safest assets available anywhere.

It’s useful to remember where Secondary Market Annuities come from. Secondary Market Annuities originally come from Structured Settlements. These are payment streams issued to injured parties in compensation for injuries or other claims.  These awards are negotiated by the parties, usually in a court case or out of court settlement.  The winners of these settlements have legal counsel who have a duty to look out for their client’s interests, and consequently, when they opt for a Structured Settlement they are opting for the safety and well- being of the clients over a long period of time.

The annuity companies that offer Structured Settlement Annuities  are the strongest in the industry- Met Life, New York Life, John Hancock, Genworth, Allstate, Symetra, Berkshire Hathaway… these are generally AAA rated carriers and in the business of conservatively managing risk and paying claims safely and on time.

Almost by definition, with Structured Settlement Annuities you are dealing with the best of the best right from the start.

But in addition, it’s helpful to know that it’s mostly big institutions in the space, and not as much an individual investor’s game. You’re in luck and have an opportunity to get at an asset class few know about!

Institutional buyers of Structured Settlement Annuities:

For decades, payment streams backed by Structured Settlement Annuities have been aggregated and securitized and sold to institutional investors. JG Wentworth, the largest player in the industry, sells nearly $600,000,000 ($600M) worth of asset backed notes each year. The assets are, of course, diverse pools of Structured Settlement Annuity backed payment streams.

These asset backed securities routinely trade at yields just over the 30 year Treasury – they are A rated payments and are snapped up by long term institutional investors.

When reading the securities offering documentation and credit reports of JG Wentworth’s notes (contact us if you want a copy), the analysts identify risk in two main areas:

  • Transfer Risk
  • Carrier Risk

For #2, first, Carrier risk is largely mitigated by the sheer size and quality of the carriers that operate in the Structured Settlement annuity space. We’re dealing with the best of the best- Met Life, NY Life, Prudential… we’re generally not dealing with smaller insurance companies.

And as to #1, Transfer risk refers to the legal procedure transferring a payment stream from seller to you as buyer. Luckily for you, we follow a rigid and state mandated procedure that ensure transfers are complete, legally reviewed, and court approved, each time.

Here are a few more key points.

Structured Settlement Transfer Process:

The transfer process making you a new payee under an existing payment stream is also very safe.  There is a relatively uniform process adopted in 49 states that requires notifications, disclosures, and procedures to be followed.  While the majority of the documentation is contractual, there is one step in the process where a court with jurisdiction over the original settlement also needs to rule that the transfer is in the seller’s interest.

While the court order is one key piece among several that properly document a transfer of payment rights, it actually does nothing to verify the payments.  An investor’s name in the court order simply exposes the investor in a public manner.  The process we use  through our firm DCF Exchange protects investor confidentiality.

There are a variety of additional reasons that Structured Settlement Annuities are extremely safe. These are summarized below

Safety Factor #1

An insurance company paying a structured settlement is a party to the court ordered transfer process. The payment remains in force throughout the transfer process regardless of who receives the checks.  Just because the payee changes as a result of a court- ordered transfer does not change the underlying payment stream or give the carrier any right to stop making payments.

Safety Factor #2:

There are five key items that document a case transfer and ensure legal safety of payments to you:

  1. Benefits letter from the issuer to the payee, which establishes that the Payee has the payments to sell,
  2. Court order changing the payee name to you or an entity that benefits you, such as our Business Trust
  3. Acknowledgement letter or stipulation agreement after the court hearing from the Issuer naming you or an entity that benefits you  as the new payee of the specific payment stream you purchased.
  4. Legal Review reviewing all documents, notices, filings, UCC statements and procedures in each case and every jurisdiction the case is subject to.
  5. Absolute Assignment of the cash flows assigning the payments to you forevermore.

Safety Factor #3:

Because a typical client of ours purchases multiple Secondary Market Annuities, purchasing contracts in the secondary market virtually assures that you will place assets in several companies with no sacrifice to average yield or overall performance. You will spread your risk among many carriers, all generally highly rated, and achieve high yield diversification.

Secondary Market Annuities are extremely safe investments.  Sign up to the right to view our live inventory and get started today!

Secondary Market Annuity Case Study 2- Immediate Income


We’ve had a lot of comments from readers of the SMA case study #1, so decided to write up another recent transaction to further illustrate how a secondary market annuity can be used to beat the low rates and generate retirement income.

“Mike”, who has been a member of the site for over a year, had plans to retire at the end of April, 2011 and was looking for the best income options for retirement.

While wanting to continue meaningful growth for future planning opportunities, he was also concerned about too much risk with his hard-earned nest egg.  We needed to find a way to enhance his level of retirement income so additional assets could be placed in reserve for a later date.

I knew how much money he had to invest so I kept an eye on the market and was able to grab the perfect investment for him.

What did Mike get?

We found a Secondary Market Income Annuity issued by New York Life with a purchase price of $309,000 that carried excellent benefits.  Here’s how it breaks down…

$309,000 initial investment.
6.25% guaranteed effective yield over 20 years.  Income starts immediately at…

  • $1600 monthly continuing for nine years, then…
  • $2150 monthly for eleven months with a lump sum of $100,000 in month twelve, then…
  • $2150 for seven years and nine months, then…
  • $2450 for two years and two months.

Aggregate income over the 20 year period will be more than $558,000!

Compare This Secondary Market Annuity Income Stream To An Immediate Annuity:

What is astounding is that investing his initial $309,000 in a period certain, 20 year immediate annuity today would have paid him only $1400 monthly based on his and his wife’s age.   This is an aggregate total of $336,000.

Buying the secondary market income annuity gave him more than $220,000 in additional income over the immediate annuity.  This is an unbeatable investment in today’s market!

Mike was able to purchase a significant income stream from a superior rated insurance company, and also receive a big lump sum payment in the middle of the term.  With this lump sum payment he has plenty of options for covering the income gap at the end of the term.

Again, this may not represent your situation but the enhanced rates in the secondary market lend a great deal of power to the idea of conservative asset management in retirement.

Wouldn’t you like to know what this market can do for you?

Contact us now to talk about a secondary market annuity strategy for your unique situation!

To Get Access to Secondary Market Annuities, Call 800.438.5121

Or, Please Click Here To View Current Secondary Market Annuity Availability

Secondary Market Annuities- Case Study


Be sure to read our SMA Case Study #2 also.

Case Study- 47 year old single male. When Dave came to me he clearly indicated he was extremely risk-averse.  Having been on the losing side of the S&L crisis in his early saving years and two major market corrections more recently, he was pretty fed up with the investment business.

Even so, he was able to accumulate a solid level of assets in cash and an IRA.  After taking time to understand his needs and current position, we began talking about annuities, as safety is what most appealed to him. Together we looked objectively at various annuity contracts he had been shown by other agents, including GLWB and deferred index annuities.

For one reason or another nothing was completely appropriate for him given his relatively young age and the fact that he really didn’t need to make any sudden moves.  We decided to wait for the right deal to come along.  Many investors and members of this site I speak with daily have the same cautious approach in this volatile market.

Along came secondary market annuities, and the potential for substantially higher interest rates on a guaranteed basis.  We began talking about the possibility before I had access to the products so he was well informed and able to act quickly.

Being prepared beforehand was extremely important to this process and enabled him to take action when the right deal came up.  I can’t stress enough, that pre-education a critical foundation for every individual considering these products.

Here’s what we were able to accomplish with several Secondary Market Annuities…

Over the course of two weeks, Dave purchased four separate secondary market annuities for a total investment of $294,910.  Rates on these contracts range from 6.25% to 7.25% over a time period of ten to 25 years.  To keep it simple I’ll use the aggregate figure and show distributions as a whole.

The individual payments listed represent the guaranteed payments as part or all of each specific deal.  As it all came together we were able to write it down on a timeline to see how it works in his unique situation. Here’s how it comes out based on his future ages at the time of each distribution.

1.) $60,000 at age 58
2.) $60,000 at age 60
3.) $30,000 at age 62
4.) $100,000 at age 63
5.) $265,000 at age 64
6.) $83,250 at age 67
7.) $100,000 at age 68
8.) $300,000 at age 73

Total Investment: $294,910.

Total Aggregate Cash Flow: $998,250

Blended Effective Yield: 6.874%.

This plan creates a staggered set of payments that will allow him to ladder various retirement income investments to counter longevity risk and inflation.
The best part is that he can do all this with no market volatility in any part of the equation.  These contractually guaranteed figures give Dave tremendous income potential in the future with the flexibility to adapt to changing market conditions throughout retirement.

With continued savings over the next ten years and conservative management I see no reason why he can’t start planning for an early retirement now.  Do you?

Now that’s my kind of plan!

It really shows what kind of output is possible with solid, consistent growth over time.  Now, to be honest, this clients name isn’t really Dave but he is so happy with the process and end result that he has made himself available to anyone of you that would like to talk to someone who has been on your side of the secondary market annuities process and chosen to take the leap.  Call or email me and I’ll share his real name and set up a time when you two can chat.

Click On for case study #2 to produce retirement income with a secondary market annuity.

Click Here To View Current Secondary Market Annuity Availability

New SMA Procedures Finally Unveiled!


DCF LogoFor weeks, I have hinted that we had some exciting developments in the Secondary Market Annuities industry.  Finally, here are some more details, and a completely updated Buyer’s guide too that outlines our totally revamped purchase process.

So what’s all this about?

Well, for years we’ve made SMAs a part of our financial planning.  The high yield and period certain income streams have a place in many portfolios.

But one of the main issues with the asset class is the time delay between case reservation and closing.  That, and the fallout….

Too many clients would reserve cases only to find them fall apart weeks or month later.  Lost opportunity cost and broken hearts made the market far less appealing.

Well, we’ve fixed that.

We are proud to finally announce our role as principals in DCF Exchange, the premier advisor’s resource for Secondary Market Annuities. 

After years in the industry, it became clear there is a need for a ground up re-write of the transfer procedure to produce this safer, smoother, and more reliable process.  So the new process is modeled off of industry leading institutions and securitization experts to bring you by far the safest and simplest purchase process in the industry.

The wholesale partner fills a critical role by putting capital on the line to smoothly acquire and process inventory.  We are now wholesale agents as well, and can work with top advisors so they can offer SMAs to their clients.  Naturally, at AST, we are one of those top advisors and are excited to offer our clients a whole new way of doing SMA business!

For advisors, the market is now much more accessible- learn about our advisor resources at DCF Exchange

For investors, here’s a top 5 list of how the new process is superior to all others

1)      A confidential Business Trust purchases each case, insulating buyers from public record documentation

2)      The wholesale entity uses its own capital to commit to each case BEFORE it goes on our inventory- EVERYTHING we have is exclusive, and the legal team is integrated from beginning to end!

3)      We use a best in class payment servicer that allows you to have liquidity! That’s right- we can now facilitate the resale of your SMA payments!

4)      We can fill custom orders with ease and speed

5)      Best of all, we now have IN STOCK inventory that can close in as little as 24 hours!

Please, download the new Buyers Guide to learn about or unique purchase procedures.  Check out the new Inventory List online. And above all, give us a call to discover how good an In Stock SMA can be!


Sign Up To Get The New Buyers Guide !

Click To See The New Inventory!


Thanks for your patience while we put this all together!

Why SMA’s Are Hard To Beat


While we work with a variety of annuities, we frequently gravitate to Secondary Market Annuities.  For investors specifically seeking a lifetime income stream that can not be outlived, SMA’s are not appropriate.  But for many, a fixed period of time or a fixed lump sum is appropriate, and the yield on the SMA’s makes it very attractive to use these fixed term cases.

For period certain returns, SMAs are beating everything handily with nothing else coming close for the following reasons:

  • The returns are well above any other fixed income asset class of similar safety and credit quality (A to AAA)
  • The income on the SMAs is consistent, known and a blend of principal and interest, facilitating a known and orderly drawdown of assets without risk to principal from price fluctuations
  • By using SMAs you’ll be able to count on this portion of your portfolio to provide steady, consistent cash flows to supplement your monthly living expenses and thus allowing you to leave other investments alone, allowing them to return to the “Average Returns” and eliminate a “Sequence of Returns” risk.  See this excellent summary of the sequence of returns risk, a study by Moshe Milevsky
  • Diversification will be achieved by purchasing several different SMAs that add up to desired investment and will provide the desired income

To put a solid floor of income in place, determine your needs and goals.  Contact us and let us know what you are looking for.  Understand the process so that when we find the right deals for you, you can make an informed decision

It takes some patience but in the end it’s well worth it.

Why Take 1.15% When You Can Get 4.5%?


NYLLogoNew York Life  announced earlier this year it’s short and mid term, guaranteed fixed annuity rate of 1.15%.  Citing a continued flat-line market, NYLife is offering rates little better than a CD as a guaranteed floor rate.

There is a market value adjustment, so the actual yield to maturity may be higher, however the floor may also be all that is earned

When considering fixed annuities or options similar to the NY Life above, take a moment first to call us and discuss Secondary Market Annuities.

Short and mid term lump sums routinely pay 4.5 to 5% effective rate of return.  Deferred…. compounding… and often, from NY Life itself!

To put it in perspective, a $100,000 investment today will pay back $102,311.89 in three years at 1.15%

The EXACT SAME INVESTMENT of $100,000 today will pay $109,197.02 at 4.5%

That’s nearly a 4X increase in real dollars – $2311 in Interest income vs $9197!!

Secondary Market Annuities are pure and simple, more income at a lower cost.  Give us a call to find out more.




Perfect IRA Deal- A Nice Deferred Lump Sum


Today I want to feature a deferred, lump sum investment that is just hard to beat.  We have two similar lump sums, from two different top rated carriers, AIG and Prudential.  Each have the same payment stream.

The AIG deal is this one:

What makes this so special?  Well, compare it to a CD or a fixed annuity.  For an investor with a bucket of cash and time to defer, there are few better ways to position assets today.

Take an IRA for example.  For a 50 year old, an IRA is a bucket of money that you can’t touch until you retire, age 59.5 at the earliest without IRS penalty.  What’s a 50 year old to do? You have to defer for 10 years at minimum…. and if you’re looking to retire at 65, this is a perfectly timed passive and safe investment.

Long term deferred lump sum investments make perfect sense in an IRA where you can’t do anything with the money anyway until you retire.  And concerns about a large amount of taxable income coming in one year are moot when you do this deal in an IRA.  It’s all tax deferred anyway.

Compare CD’s at a paltry 1.5 % rate, taxable annually… Fixed annuities at about 3%…. Muni bonds at 2% to 4% and susceptible to principal degradation if rates rise… and compare to Treasuries at 1%… ish.

These yields are you other ‘safe’ money options.  Why wouldn’t you seriously consider a fantastic  lump sum deferred deal like the one above that has a guaranteed price, and guaranteed payout, fixed and defined terms, and a great rate?

We’re waiting for your call- 2 of these are available today, one from AIG and one from Prudential.  800-438-5121.

Substantial Immediate Income & 5.5% Rate


Today I want to highlight two large immediate income deals.  It’s not often that we have substantial cases, because most settlements are smaller in nature.  However today we have a Genworth and a John Hancock case each nearly $2 million in size.  And each offers a long-term increasing income stream that is just perfect for retirement.

The most attractive case I have seen in years is this John Hancock case.  At a 5.5% effective interest rate, this is truly an outstanding deal.  With fixed annuities paying in the neighborhood of 3%, high quality bonds in the 3 to 4% range, and 20 year period certain immediate annuities in the 2 1/2% effective rate of return range, the 5.5% rate on the John Hancock case is an astounding value.

For an investment of just over $2 million, we can deliver a guaranteed 33 year income stream paying out $5,117,771.09.  Can your financial advisor guarantee you the same output?  I doubt it…

The beauty of secondary market annuities is that we can simply deliver more income, coupled with an outstanding guarantee, for a lower purchase price than other comparable investment options.    No other retirement income plan comes close to this level of return, guarantee, and safety

The downside of the John Hancock case is that it cannot be split among several investors, it cannot be purchased with IRA funds, nor can a trust be the purchasing entity.  But it is perfect for high net worth individual looking for a guaranteed income stream lasting 33 years, and we’re investigating the use of a simple LLC holding company to accommodate a couple of members to purchase the case.  Call for details

The case starts paying $4880 per month in January of next year, and that payment stream increases by 3% per year for five years.  Then in the middle of 2018, the income jumps from $5657 per month to $9478 per month.  That income stream also increases 3% per year, and lasts 27 years.  The final 12 months of payments are at $21,054 per month.

This is a substantial income from one of the top carriers in the business.  With uniform A to A+ ratings and a Comdex score of 93, John Hancock is simply at the top of the game.

As if the John Hancock case wasn’t enough, we also have a Genworth case nearly the same size that pays out over a shorter period of time. The Genworth case starts in just a few months with its income at $10,350 per month.  The income stream increases each year for 18 years, with a final 12 months at $17,620 per month.

Whereas the John Hancock case cannot be split, this Genworth case can be split among several investors, so if you are interested in a portion of this case, please let me know.

These two large immediate income cases show just some of the power of the secondary market for annuities.  If either one suits your fancy please don’t hesitate to call to learn more.

Is Your Home Equity Optimized?


Home equity has been unreliable  recent years.  Too many used home equity as an ATM, and the real estate downturn has left many realizing the folly of their ways with homes worth less than their mortgage.

However while  most of the visitors to this site have significant equity or paid off homes, most are only considering their homes as an asset to be utilized far in the future when they downsize.

I’d like to propose another way of using your home today, and capitalizing on the unbelievably low interest rates in the home mortgage market.

For many people with good credit, home loans can be obtained in the 3% to 4.5% range.  It doesn’t really take a rocket scientist to realize that investing money borrowed at 3.5% into a new investment yielding 5 to 6% is a good deal.

Consider these four current offers (as of 8/2/12): each one offers a solid cash flow, as well as lump sums.  Depending on how much money you borrow from your home, the income stream can be used to pay your mortgage, even pay it off.  This leaves you a lump sum that matures in the future as essentially free money.

Home Equity Secondary Market Annuities

The Genworth case is a perfect example.  It pays $4800/ month for 306 months, then pays $550,000 lump sum.  At 4% interest, you could borrow $1,005,413 on a 30 year home mortgage with payments of $4800/ month.   Theoretically, you could borrow the entire purchase price of $922,969, pay the mortgage off with the income stream, and be left with $550,000 at the end of the term.

Now, jumbo mortgage rates, your risk tolerance, and other factors may make this specific amount of borrowing not advisable.  But let’s say you have $550,000 to invest, and a paid off home worth $1M.  You could easily borrow $400,000, and rates on 15 year mortgages are as low as 3.5%.  The payment on this is 15 year mortgage is just $2860 per month.

Then, combine your mortgage proceeds and your available cash to purchase the $922,969 Genworth case yielding 5.5% over 28 years.  Utilize $2800 of the monthly income from Genworth for your mortgage payment, you are still left with $2000 month of income for the first 15 years.  Your house is paid off after 15 years, and your income from Genworth jumps to $4800 a month for another 10.5 years.  As a super bonus, you also have a $550,000 lump sum windfall- your entire invested principal is returned in full, and meanwhile your enjoyed 15 years of $2000/ mo and 10.5 years of $4800/mo.  That is a superb investment.

Utilizing home-equity in this way is very safe, as your mortgage payment is directly offset by your new income source, and the investment that you make yields a higher rate of return than your debt costs you.  There are home mortgage interest tax deductions to take into consideration as well that may make this even better.  For retirement investors looking to safely utilize home-equity, a strategy like the one described above is hard to beat.

It just so happens that we currently have four similar cases to the Genworth case that all would suit this strategy.  Each includes significant income streams and a lump sums.  For investors with home-equity, you owe it to yourself to make lemonade out of this lemon of a low rate environment.

Don’t let these low rates go to waste.  Grab some cheap mortgage money, and give us a call to secure one of these fantastic income with lump sum Secondary Market Annuities. In most cases, we can make arrangements to hold cases while your refinance is processing.

Excellent Deferred SMA’s


Summer  is heating up, and the deferred Secondary Market Annuities we have available this week are hot too.  For so many, just a few short years of SAFE, deferred growth can make a huge difference in planning stable income streams.  Locking in a future income stream now with a strong carrier can be a great move.

Below are selected deferred income contracts we have available.  Click the image to  see the whole list.

As you may  know, these move quickly so if there’s a deal you like, don’t hesitate to give us a call to reserve it.  They might not be available for long

Deferred Secondary Market Annuities

Also, these income + Lump Sum contracts have some attractive features.  The Prudential case #06460 is a solid long term income stream, with a decent lump sum not far out.

Deferred Income Secondary Market Annuities

If you have any questions about our Secondary Market Annuities do not hesitate to call or email.

Most of the questions we receive regularly are also addressed here: SMA FAQ

How Life Contingent Secondary Market Annuities Work


After several conversations this week with prospective buyers about life contingent secondary market annuities, I felt it was important to broadcast some information about these exciting high-yield opportunities to everyone.  The two deals that I am highlighting today are new on our list.   They might be gone soon, so if they look good, let’s chat soon! I will  quickly highlight a life contingent deal, and then explain how life contingent deals work.

The first deal is a large Prudential deal.  This deal will absolutely drench you in income for 30 years.  The final years worth of monthly payments is an astounding $17,875.56 per month- this contract pays out a total over $4 million over 30 years, on an investment of just $1.4 million today.  This astounding 6% yield simply cannot be matched anywhere.  The seller in this case is younger- in his 20s- and life insurance is already approved. 

Life Contingent Secondary Market Annuities

Life Contingent Secondary Market Annuities as of 6/27/12

The full payment stream is as follows:

4 life contingent monthly payments of $1,860.25 beginning on 09-01-2012 through and including 12-01-2012; 360 life contingent monthly payments of $1,916.06 beginning on 01-01-2013 with a 3% annual increase through and including 12-01-2042;

264 life contingent monthly payments of $7,181.79 beginning on 01-01-2021 with a 3% annual increase through and including 12-01-2042;

Plus Lump Sums:

01/01/26 = $100,000

01/01/31 = $200,000

 This is just an incredible, long-term, increasing income stream.

So how does a life contingent payment stream work?

 I am going to start out by saying that life contingent deals are not for everyone. If you don’t understand the Secondary Market for annuities, or feel unsure about handling investments, they might not be for you. They add a little bit more complexity to the secondary market annuity transaction, and honestly sometimes they do not close.  Where about one in 10 SMA transactions fail to get approved in court, we have an even lower success rate with life contingent deals.

 So with that disclaimer out of the way why am I telling you about these deals?  Because they come with a higher yield. 

 A life contingent secondary market annuity simply means that the payments due to the seller – and thereby due to you as a new buyer – depend on the seller’s life.  If the seller dies after you buy the payments, the payments will cease to be made by the insurance company. 

 Therefore, in order to make this an attractive and safe investment for you, life insurance is purchased on the life of the seller that will pay you any amount due to you under the remaining terms of your contract.

 Let’s use an example of a current deal on our list that is new today.

Life Contingent Secondary Market Annuities

Life Contingent Secondary Market Annuities

Looking at the CIGNA deal, the payments start in December of 2019.  On this deal, the first 36 payments are guaranteed.  The remaining 126 payments are contingent on the seller’s life.  In this case, the seller is a 40-year-old male. 

 The benefits statement is:

36 guaranteed monthly payments of $1,590 beginning on 12-11-2019 through and including 11-11-2022;

116 life contingent monthly payments of $1,590 beginning on 12-11-2022 through and including 07-11-2032.

 On 12-11-2022, the date of the 37th payment, your accrued principal and interest balance is $140,674.  Life insurance in excess of this amount has already been purchased by the seller, with you as the buyer of these payments to be named as a beneficiary under a collateral assignment. 

 If the seller is to pass away at any time during the life of this 14 year contract, the amount due to you under the amortization schedule of this deal will be paid to you.  If there are more life insurance proceeds than what remains owed to you, the remainder amount pays to the heirs of the seller.

Pros and cons of Life Contingent Secondary Market Annuities

Because life contingent deals are not absolute payment streams, they’re not for everyone.  Some investors do not want the uncertainty of receiving a lump sum in the future. 

However the flipside is also a possibility – receiving a lump sum might be an unexpected windfall.  It might allow you to reinvest in a different rate environment, or it may be flexibility that is a pleasant surprise.  There can be some complications purchasing life contingent deals with IRA money, so be sure to give us a call.

The important thing to look at right now is that life contingent deals have a higher rate of interest.  This reflects the added complexity, and sellers are willing to accept a higher discount rate to sell life contingent payments.

If you are seeking a higher yield, then a life contingent deal might be for you.  We do not publish all the life contingent deals available to us, so be sure to give us a call.  We can discuss your needs, and find the right deal for you.

Buying Trouble With Secondary Pensions


Frequent readers of Annuity Straight Talk updates will know that we are big fans of the secondary market for annuities. Well there’s another secondary market with high yields and assumed levels of safety but things aren’t always as they appear. I’m talking about secondary pensions, which come with a whole different set of rules and guidelines. In fact, it seems as though by participating in this market you’ll be buying nothing but trouble. Forbes published an article recently with a few horror stories. Read the article here.

Since we promote secondary annuities, it’s our duty to clarify things when something similar is peddled to unsuspecting investors. The transfer of structured settlements, or secondary annuities, is governed by federal statute, USC 5891. Court assignments are irrevocable and the transfer process has been refined to the point that it represents extreme levels of safety for consumers.

Secondary pensions, on the other hand, have laws that explicitly restrict and prohibit transfer. So when you purchase one of these, not only is there no court order, but it’s very hard to make the private-party contracts stick as well.  The original seller can simply decide to stop sending payments. The article does a good job of outlining the imminent legal issues and points to certain advisors who are misleading clients into thinking these contracts are legally binding. They are not and should be avoided at all costs.

If you’ve considered participating in the secondary market for annuities, knowledge of similar options is of paramount importance. Don’t believe anyone who tries to steer you toward a secondary pension. Let me be clear: the sale of pensions in a secondary market is strictly forbidden by law and I’d like to ensure that none of our readers makes a mistake with precious retirement assets.

Please contact us with any questions or comments. For more detailed assistance we are available by phone or email.

Thanks for your continued loyalty!

Bryan J. Anderson
Contact Us

Massive New SMA Inventory


Annuity Straight Talk is pleased to present a significant uptick in available inventory today.  We have a wide range of immediate income, lump sum, cost of living adjusted, and high quality credit deals.  These deals move fast so be sure to check the list. 

Of special note is a large New York Life contract- this is the top of the heap for credit quality, with a COMDEX score of 100 and an A++ AM Best rating.  This 15 year, increasing income stream can fund a great retirement.  Top it off with longevity insurance protection or a deferred lump sum annuity, and you have retirement income all sewn up.

 Give us a call for ideas on how you can secure your own high yield safe investment today, and see some samples below.  Get them while they last!

Secondary Market Annuities Inventory

How Safe is the Secondary Market for Annuities?


The question of safety of the Secondary Market is one  we receive frequently, especially after sending out a list of currently available offers that pique reader interest.

Quite simply, we like  structured settlement secondary annuities  because  they offer the highest yield and highest level of safety available to consumers for retirement income purposes.  They are not the simplest  transactions for buyer or agents to complete, and they are not appropriate for all situations.  For example, for older investors,  other types of annuities may have more benefits in flexibility or longevity protection.  However as planning tools with excellent  yield and safety, they simply can’t be beat.

Be sure to reference our post on the difference between Structured Settlement Annuities  and viatical (life insurance) transactions

 So now that you know why we like them in general, the question remains, is this market for real and how safe is it?

Secondary market annuities can more specifically be called structured settlements in technical terms. A structured settlement originates when an individual wins a settlement- this can be a car accident, medical malpractice, or any other sort of award.

The settlement essentially takes the same form as an annuity contract that is available to anyone who invests retirement assets with an insurance company- it’s a promise by a highly rated carrier to make a series of future payments to the individual.

In this case, rather than an individual buying those future promised with a premium (AKA an annuity), in a settlement, the losing party in the case settles their obligation by transferring a sum of money to satisfy those future payments. The sum is transferred to an insurance company who then shoulders the future market risk and court-ordered obligation to make specific payments. The winning party- usually an individual- enjoys this income stream tax-free per IRS regulations.

However, circumstances change for people, and sometimes they wish to sell their future payments for a lump sum. This is where our ”Secondary Market Annuities” originate.

Because of this slight difference in origination of funds in the settlement, there is one critical difference that separates primary market from secondary market annuities. In addition I’ll add two other reasons that will show clearly why the secondary market is a much SAFER investment.

Safety Factor #1

An insurance company becomes party to a structured settlement as part of a final court order in a lawsuit. In the unlikely event that this specific insurance company fails in the future, an existing court order compelling the company to make payments would place that liability among the company’s most senior debt obligations. And that means it gets paid out ahead of all other company liabilities. The insolvent insurance company would be held in contempt of court for failing to make payments according to the terms of a structure settlement. The stream of income provided to you via the secondary market annuity would not be affected nor have to wait for further bankruptcy or liquidation proceedings.

Safety Factor #2

And now for the somewhat less critical but also quite relevant…

Each state has an insurance guaranty fund that covers the guarantees of insurance policies and annuities for insolvent insurance companies who can’t make payments. Let’s assume your state guaranty fund covers $100,000 for annuities but you need to invest quite a bit more money to cover your retirement income needs. Within the primary market, no matter what you decide to invest, you may only be covered to the maximum limit of $100,000.

By using the secondary market, you are subject to the guaranty limits of the state where the contract was initially issued, not necessarily your state of residence. Structuring an income portfolio in the secondary market typically requires multiple deals to complete. It is quite probable that each contract will have originated in a different state, which affords you the total protection of all states involved rather than simply the limits offered in your current state of residency.

Safety Factor #3:

The risks in an SMA are generally transactional in nature- meaning, it has a risk of not closing due to the seller changing their mind or the court not approving the transfer. In both of these cases, there is no financial consequence to you if the case fails, and your deposit is fully refunded.  This happens in about 1 in 10 cases where generally a court disallows the seller from selling due to the seller’s personal situation.

Other risks in an improperly handled SMA transaction are that a payment stream could be already committed or not transferable. Our process eliminates that risk as our outside counsel reviews and will not release purchase funds until a thorough checklist is complete.

Thus the three key items that ensure legal safety are:

  1. Benefits letter from the issuer to the payee, which establishes that the Payee has the payments to sell,
  2. Court order changing the payee to you,
  3. Acknowledgement letter or stipulation agreement after the court hearing from the Issuer naming you as the new payee of the specific payment stream you purchased.

Not surprisingly, these three key pieces are what must be in place before your funds are released to a factoring company and seller, and are what constitute our closing book after a transaction is complete.

Safety Factor #4:

And finally we’re going to talk about a safeguard that is inherent to any sound retirement income plan. Any advisor worth their salt will advise you to spread your assets between several different insurance companies. While this is a great recommendation, it rarely happens because most salesmen are lazy and benefits can vary greatly between carriers to the point where it puts you at a financial disadvantage.

Because a typical case involves multiple Secondary Market Annuities, purchasing contracts in the secondary market virtually assures that you will place assets in several companies with no sacrifice to average yield or overall performance.


A retirement income portfolio based on secondary market annuities thus offers unparalleled safety of 1) credit quality, 2) seniority status among the issuing company obligations, 3) rock solid legal review, and 4) diversity of carriers.

If you’d like to explore this profitable yet extremely safe opportunity for your retirement income plans, we’re ready for your call.

Annuity Straight Talk


Calculating Yields in the Secondary Market


Nearly every time we send out an email with new secondary market annuity offers, several inquiries come back with people asking how the return is calculated.

The first resource is one from the vault- a piece we wrote several years ago that is just as accurate today- Which 10% Do you Want?

For more, let’s see an example that everyone can relate to…

Assume a purchase price of $282,951 where monthly income payments of $1500 begin one month from today and continue for 360 months. The effective annual yield is 5% and aggregate cash flow comes to $540,000.

Everyone has seen this similar loan and repayment amortization schedule with a conventional mortgage. With a mortgage you would be the borrower but with a Secondary Market Annuity you are essentially the lender.

The payments outlined above can be a good example of a 30 year mortgage or it could be an excellent income stream from the secondary market. Either would be calculated exactly the same way.

With Secondary Market Annuities many people want to assume that the $282,951 is simply growing at 5% for 30 years, but this is not the case, just as it is not the case with the amortizing mortgage either. Why is this? When money is paid out, the compounding asset balance shrinks.

Every payment on an amortizing mortgage is part interest and part principal, and Secondary Market Annuities are no different- each payment includes an interest earned component, plus a return of principal component.  We won’t bore you with an extensive amortization table here outlining 360 payments- if you really want it, just ask and we’ll send it over!

Alternative  Way of Looking at Secondary Market Annuities Yields:

There is another simple way to look at it so let’s have another example. Assume you placed $282,951 in a savings account earning 5% effective annual interest (unlikely, I know). If you were to withdraw $1500 per month, after 360 months you would have collected $540,000 and the account would be empty. While you are in fact earning 5% interest, you are not earning interest once the money comes out of the account.

The calculations for these returns are slightly more complicated than a simple (money ‘times’ interest rate ‘times’ time) formula. If that were the case, $282,951 growing at 5% for 30 years would compound to $1,222,886 which isn’t the case here. Money at work in the account earns interest while money in your pocket does not.

Secondary Market Annuities Yield Summary

These examples indicate that not all income deals in the secondary market are appropriate unless the structure meets specific objectives for your retirement plan. Immediate income works for some people and deferred income or future lump sum payments work for others. Which one is best for you? You must answer that question.

There are several ways to capitalize on the secondary market. What we have are above average interest rates and extremely high levels of safety, and a variety of available cash flows. The rate and safety are a compelling proposition in any economy and especially true now. The only thing to determine is what you are seeking, and then match your goal with an available offer.

To maximize the strength of this market, use the right tool for the job- don’t buy an income stream if you have no need for the payments. Instead, let it defer and accrue a few years! Likewise, don’t buy a 10 year deferral annuity if you need money every month.

Please don’t hesitate to call us if there are any specific questions you have about how the secondary market for annuities works, and for assistance selecting the right offers for your specific situation.

You can always view our available Secondary Market Annuities here, or give us a call or make an appointment to help setting your goals and matching appropriate tools for the job-

Have a great week!

Bryan J. Anderson
[email protected]

Secondary Market Annuities Are Not Viaticals


At Annuity Straight Talk we encourage you to learn all you can about annuities so you can independently verify what we recommend, or what any advisor you chose to work with presents you for consideration. As many know, we often recommend Secondary Market Annuities as a very high credit quality alternative for investors seeking a yield above market for comparable safety.

Recently, a reader who inquired about Secondary Market Annuities did some research and wrote back,


We just wanted to let you know that we are not interested at this time to purchase any SMA’s, after reading several articles about insurance company’s being able to opt out of these contracts in app. 35 states.

Thank you so much for your time.

As it’s easy to get turned around in the World Wide Web, we thought it would be beneficial for all to read our response:

The article referenced is here. It may require a registration to that site, but the registration is free.  If you don’t wish to register and want the article, Contact us and we’ll email you a copy.

Our response to the reader is as follows:

The article you referenced points to the proliferation of a ‘secondary market for annuities’ which is actually unrelated to the contracts I promote on my website. It is confusing, however, due to the similar name both transactions share.

In fact, the contracts I promote are more properly labeled ‘resale of structured settlements’ and come in the form of a payment stream (an annuity) from an insurance company.

We call them “Secondary Market Annuities” because they are annuity payment streams being bought on the secondary market. Unfortunately, regular annuities being re-sold would share the same title, and therein lies the confusion.

Secondary market annuities as mentioned in the article have to do with investors buying an annuity in the name of someone else. Why would someone do this? Because certain annuity contracts have death benefits attached to them.

Take for instance a variable annuity with a death benefit. If the owner dies when the market is depressed, a death benefit of the original investment amount plus interest will be paid to the beneficiaries.

Now, the problem with this sort of transaction is that groups of wealthy investors and attorneys got together and solicited terminally ill people. The investors purchased annuities with a death benefit while naming themselves beneficiary and a terminally ill individual the owner. It offered a risk-free way to invest in the market by leaving the insurance company on the hook for a death benefit.

The problem is that it went contrary to the spirit of offering protection for people saving for retirement while trying to protect family members. It falls in the same category of transaction as ‘stranger oriented life insurance’ and other viatical transactions.

Many regulators felt that investors were taking advantage of terminally ill people and the result was a series of laws that allowed insurance companies to cancel certain benefits if contracts were transferred. I personally believe that was the right thing to do. Contractual guarantees are put in place for very good reason and I feel any effort to exploit that should be stopped.

But comparing those “stranger originated transactions” to the structured settlements we promote at Annuity Straight Talk is like comparing apples to oranges, as they say.

The transfer of the Secondary Market Annuities we sell- more properly labeled ‘resale of structured settlements’- is regulated by an act of Congress in 2001 that produced HR 2884 and is found in Internal Revenue Code 5891. As of 2008, all but a small handful of states enacted laws governing transfers to mirror the federal statute.

In summary, the legislation and tax guidance cited states that a structured settlement may be resold and that if it follows a proscribed process involving the Court in the state where the original settlement originated, that the transfer of payments would retain its tax treatment and not be subject to a penalty taxation.

As a result, each of the transactions we promote has a Court date wherein the transaction needs to be reviewed and approved. Court orders must be in place and all documents reviewed and approved prior to funding.

The transfers we promote receive a substantial amount of due diligence from our legal counsel for your benefit and ours. As such they offer the highest levels of safety and retirement income efficiency. Each case is treated with exhaustive care and the result is the greatest amount of benefit for our clients, all firmly within the confines of state and federal laws.

It’s critical to perform due diligence and this article (cited above) is important if you are considering the purchase of a stranger-oriented life insurance policy or an annuity contract on the secondary market with a death benefit attached to another party’s life. But it’s equally important to understand the differences between that marketplace and the structured settlement market.

We hope this discussion and links are useful to our readers. We welcome any additional thoughts or questions- simply email us or leave a comment below.

** You may also wish to reference this post with more detailed information on the safety of Secondary Market Annuities.

Great Short-Term SMAs Available Now!

From what I’ve heard, the information shared over the last few weeks regarding the secondary annuity market has helped several people gain a greater understanding of this product class. Stepping into a little-known niche of the financial markets is a major transition for anyone. Understanding all that goes into a serious financial commitment is essential to making a calculated decision.
Because the inventory changes so quickly at times it is my job to let you know where the value is with what is currently available. Most of you have unique objectives so I’d like to highlight one specific area where this market offers fantastic opportunity.
Right now, the short-term deals are hot! Without the commitment of long-term deferred income or lump sum payments, you can secure exceptional rates on three to nine year contracts. Today, those contracts are yielding 4.75%-5.75% in comparison to the rates on CDs and Money Market funds that run between 1% and 3%.
For instance, here are a few quality short-term deals…
·         $66,906 will grow to $75,000 in three years for an effective yield of 4.75%
·         $194,842 will grow to $240,000 in four years for an effective yield of 5%
·         $57,733 will grow to $83,000 in seven years for an effective yield of 5.5%
And that’s just a small sample of the available contracts…
This is an easy decision to make. With so many people unsure of how to allocate capital in a volatile market, many have decided to play it safe. Well, here’s your safety with a little yield to go with it. All of this in a shorter time frame that will give you plenty of flexibility for any changes that may come in the stock market or economy.
Check out the current inventory now and see for yourself. Call or email immediately to reserve a deal that suits your situation.
If this is the type of investment that works for you but you don’t see anything that fits just right, please let me know to keep an eye out for the perfect deal so it doesn't slip away.
Have a great week!
Bryan J. Anderson

[email protected]