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Mark Miller: Remaking Retirement

A Primer on Annuities

Contributor Mark Miller walks through the various products and features and discusses for whom they’re best suited.

The annuities market is plagued by an assortment of opaque names for its products. Look under the hood of the industry and you will find that some annuities are fairly easy to understand while others are not. Lately, the most complex ones seem to sell best. 

Sales of annuities are rising--2019 was the fastest year of sales since 2008, with complicated indexed annuities leading the pack. That trend is driven mainly by baby boomers searching for protection from volatility.