Total annuity sales in the first quarter of 2014 reached $56.1 billion, up 13.1 percent compared with the first quarter of last year, when sales totaled $49.6 billion, according to the Insured Retirement Institute.

The IRI first-quarter results, based on data reported by Beacon Research and Morningstar, reflected high levels of fixed annuity sales, which totaled $22.6 billion during the period.  This was an increase of 50.7 percent from nearly $15 billion in the first quarter of 2013 and down just 4.1 percent from the $23.5 billion reported in the previous quarter.

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