As the New Year approaches, now is the best time to throw a retrospective glance at some of the key drivers of transformation of the life insurance products in the industry over the last decade. After all, it is the trends that carry the potential of shaping the retirement planning, life insurance and health insurance markets in 2014. The driving forces in the market and the ways in which the carriers get back to them, can determine how effectively we can offer the kind of innovative solutions that consumers need and demand. If you’re looking forward to watch out for the life insurance industry trends in 2014, here are some that you may consider.
1. Universal life products will come with enhanced guarantee: We are usually aware of the fact that accessing the life insurance markets can be a challenge. For example, given the order for increased reserves on GUL products or Guaranteed Universal Life, there were some carriers that withdrew completely or pulled back from their commitments to the GUL market in 2013. But along with the different challenges comes different opportunities, especially for the distribution partners and carriers who not only respond promptly but also have the required resources, insight, experience to predict the needs of the consumer and react proactively.
2. Innovations for boosting retirement income: A coalition of consumer interest in assuring plentiful income in retirement has also led to innovative product development and refinement, that promises to offer new opportunities for advisors, agents and clients. According to studies, it seems that financial literacy and retirement security are on everyone’s mind. Nearly 40% Americans were interested in learning about the ways in which they can generate retirement income. There has been a huge change in the mindset of the consumers, protecting assets is now 8 times more important than obtaining riskier returns. This new mindset has given birth to a new pack of solutions on both retirement planning and life insurance programs.
3. Brand new life insurance riders: As the carriers, agents and the advisors get enough opportunities to serve client needs with the most fastidious degree of sensitivity in 2014, there’s enough enthusiasm for the newest designs in the life insurance benefit riders. The insurance policies that can meet the needs of the clients, their children, that can provide early access to the death benefit, will become popular in 2014. Today’s middle-market consumers are often challenged to fulfill multiple types of needs by using fewer products and hence the US Department of Health and Human Services has pointed out the need for long term care.
4. Emerging health care needs: Yes, it’s a fact that opportunities in 2014 lie somewhere else. None of us are unaware of the ramifications and complications of the Affordable Care Act. This is perhaps the best time for the distribution partners and the carriers to utilize the unwanted public scrutiny over the health care access and deliver some of the groundbreaking products that can safeguard the consumers against the financial perils and desolating medical conditions. In a nation where medical bills result to 60% of the bankruptcies, the life insurance industry needs to serious buck up.
As we are about to step into 2014, we have to take into account the developments and trends that are going to predominate the New Year. Take into account the above mentioned changes to the life insurance industry and base your decisions accordingly so that you can make the right decisions regarding getting one for you and your family.
Author: Marc Brown
Marc B is a senior forum member with AmPmInsure Community. You can get in touch with him in Twitter: @marcbrown2050