The fourth quarter wasn't kind, but overall sales of all types of annuities rose in 2014, with fixed annuities making the best annual showing since 2009.

Industry-wide annuity sales in the final quarter of 2014 reached $56.6 billion, a 0.5 percent decrease from $56.9 billion in the previous quarter and a 4.6 percent dip from $59.3 billion in the fourth quarter of 2013.

Despite the slight drop, industry-wide sales were up for the full year, reaching $229.4 billion in 2014, a 3.8 percent increase from $220.9 billion in 2013 and an 8.2 percent increase from $212 billion in 2012.

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