March 2017 – Private Site Fund Performance Centers

The ability to conduct funds analysis and administer subaccount performance research is fundamental for clients managing annuities with investment components. Firms can facilitate this process by offering clients a wide array of subaccount performance and pricing details with options for benchmarking comparisons and additional subaccount profile research. This Annuity Monitor Report examines the performance centers available to clients on the private sites of 14 firms in our coverage group. We evaluate the depth of investment data available, investment research capabilities, platform design and findability of performance centers.

Annuity Monitor firms generally succeed in ensuring clients can easily conduct thorough funds research, albeit with differing approaches. While the majority of firms offer dedicated private site performance centers, 43% redirect clients to the public sites. This can be cumbersome, leading to additional steps in the research process and even thwarting clients from easily viewing their own investment details. However, most firms offer clients seamless access to investment research with links from the navigation menu (57% of firms) and homepage (50%). Clients benefit from the pertinent research details that nearly all Annuity Monitor firms offer within tables including each investment option name, inception date and annualized total returns for the year-to-date, for one-, three-, five- and 10-year periods and since inception. Most firms (57%) provide subaccount profile pages for additional research, and 75% of those firms enhance their offerings with Morningstar data. When it comes to offering benchmarking tools, only 29% of firms currently do so, leaving room for improvement. It is key that firms provide all the necessary performance tools for clients looking to research investment options.