Guarantees, hybrid/combination long-term care products, voluntary coverage, product riders and flexible income options are some of the trends that will help mold the insurance and retirement markets in 2011.
"In today's environment, we see a shift towards protection products that offset volatility and solutions that offer flexibility. The need for guarantees has become a compelling driver, along with an increased awareness of risk. As people near retirement, understanding the risks that may lie ahead and planning for the unknown becomes more critical.
4) Term Life
Continued focus will remain on term life products, as consumers continue to seek cost-effective plans for immediate protection. Term also will continue to be used as a complement to permanent life insurance, helping affluent clients meet other needs and goals. Term also can be used as a temporary solution for protection with an option to convert the policy to permanent insurance at a later date - for example, if cash is tied up in stock options, conversion to permanent insurance could happen once cash flow improves. Expect competition in this market-driven space to continue to be strong.
5) Flexible Income Options
Many providers will look to offer clients both variable and fixed annuity solutions in 2011. Clients who have been equity-driven in the past may feel a bit shattered by recent market conditions. Insurance providers may look to appeal to clients who want the stability of a fixed income annuity but the growth potential of a variable option by creating innovative solutions that include both fixed and variable lifetime income options.