marketFLEX enhancements, expanded sales team ratchet up company’s commitment to alternative asset variable annuities
Advisors seeking to help clients address market uncertainty with enhanced risk management are increasingly turning to alternative investment options, and interest in variable annuities (VAs) featuring alternative asset classes continues to gain traction in the marketplace. Nationwide Financial announced today that it is adding 10 new guidance models and two new fund options sub-advised by Loring Ward to its America’s marketFLEX® series of variable annuity products. America’s marketFLEX combines the protection of a variable annuity with the enhanced risk management and diversification provided by extended investment options, including alternative investments.
The new guidance models, Known as Nationwide® Guided Portfolio Strategies (GPS), provide a simpler way to use alternative investments and potentially reduce and manage risk for clients. This easy-to use, “check the box” solution for advisors, includes 10 pre-packaged options focused on alternatives. The new GPS models are anchored around Cardinal funds, which are actively managed.
The addition of two new funds sub-advised by Loring Ward will expand upon the existing broad range of marketFLEX investment options, which includes a total of 18 fund families.
“At Nationwide, we’re excited about the future of VAs and alternative investments,” said Eric Henderson, senior vice president of Life Insurance and Annuities for Nationwide Financial. “With the support of our expanded alternative VA sales force, the new GPS models and investment options put Nationwide Financial in a strong position to take advantage of growing demand for this type of product.”
In mid- 2012, Nationwide Financial announced that it will integrate its alternative and fee-based annuity solutions sales team with its larger traditional annuity sales force. This move better aligns with the company’s team-based approach, which puts advisors in touch with specialists across a broad range of client solutions and effectively expands the marketFLEX sales force from seven to over 100 wholesalers.
The product enhancements apply to both America’s marketFLEX® Advisor Variable Annuity (for fee-based advisors) and America’s marketFLEX® II Variable Annuity (for commission-based advisors). “Nationwide has provided alternative asset strategies within traditional and fee-based VAs for more than a decade,” Henderson said. “We’re excited about the potential for this product over the next ten years.”
America’s marketFLEX® Variable Annuities allow advisors to help clients take advantage of possible benefits associated with variable annuities, including tax advantages, spousal protection and enhanced death benefits. MarketFLEX offers a wide variety of alternative and traditional asset classes to help clients improve performance and reduce exposure to risk and portfolio volatility, with just a $10,000 minimum investment.
Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the U.S. and is rated A+ by both A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s. The company provides customers a full range of insurance and financial services, including auto insurance, motorcycle, boat, homeowners, pet, life insurance, farm, commercial insurance, annuities, mortgages, mutual funds, pensions, long-term savings plans and specialty health services. For more information, visit www.nationwide.com.