November 2014 Trends & Highlights: Annuities, Thanksgiving and Global Adventures

by on Dec 04, 2014


  • High Number of New Annuities Introduced – Over the course of November, our Annuity Monitor reported four new annuity products offered by Allianz Life, New York Life and Voya: Allianz Life added a fixed index annuity – Essential Income 7 – to its product offerings, while New York Life introduced a new fixed deferred annuity product – New York Life Clear Income Fixed Annuity. Voya unveiled two new deferred index annuities – Voya Wealth Builder Six Annuity and Voya Wealth Builder Eight Annuity.
  • Vanguard Makes Public Site Enhancements – This month, E-Monitor, Annuity Monitor and Mutual Fund Monitor each reported enhancements made to Vanguard’s public site homepage, Security Center and My Accounts page. The updated sections are cleaner and more user-friendly than their previous iterations, and feature enhanced navigation in the form of action-oriented links and more prominently featured login boxes. The Security Center also now features mobile- and tablet-friendly responsive design.
  • Firms Celebrate Thanksgiving – In honor of the November holiday, Lincoln Financial Group held a Give Thanks contest, and Amica promoted a customizable e-card. Lincoln Financial’s contest encourages users to upload a photograph of a person or memorable life event for which they are thankful. Users can submit photographs through December 5, 2014 for the chance to be featured in a Lincoln Financial full-page ad in USA Today. In a similar spirit, Amica allowed its public site visitors and clients to send a Thanksgiving video e-card, showcasing the artwork of renowned New England artist Amy Bartlett Wright.



AXA Unveils “Great Global Adventure” Contest

AXA launched a career-focused contest that uses gamification principles to attract and engage public site visitors. In order to take part in the contest, participants must play a game, completing eight levels of exercises relating to international geography, language and culture. The game’s top scorers will then be evaluated for the chance to win a one-year all expenses paid trip around the world, including the opportunity to compete in two paid internships at international AXA offices and support an AXA-sponsored global community project. The contest ends on March 9, 2015, and is only open to individuals who are either currently enrolled in or have completed full-time higher education programs within the past two years.



New Great Global Adventure Contest Microsite – AXA


TradeKing Reduces Fees for Portfolio Advisory Service

TradeKing’s portfolio advisory services arm, TradeKing Advisors, is currently waiving advisor fees for a full year on newly opened accounts. The firm also lowered its Core and Momentum portfolio management fees to 0.25% from a previous 0.75% and 0.50% from a previous 1.0% fee of the annual balance, respectively. The Core portfolio’s minimum required annual balance was also reduced to $5,000 from a previous $10,000 minimum. While no reason was provided for the fee reduction, Charles Schwab’s announcement of the Q1 2015 release of the fee-free algorithm-based Schwab Intelligent Portfolios earlier this month no doubt served as a catalyst for TradeKing’s impeccably timed portfolio management fee reductions.



New No Advisor Fees Promotion Notification – TradeKing Advisors


KeyBank Rewards Clients Who Pay Their Bills Online

The firm launched a new “It Pays to Pay Bills” sweepstakes that offers clients a chance to win $5,000 by using online Bill Pay each month. Users are automatically entered into the contest by adding three new payees or by making five or more $10 online bill payments each month. The contest runs through January 31, 2015.



Promotional Banner Added to KeyBank Homepage