From annuities to health care law to life insurance and the fiscal cliff deal, take a look at what the ProducersWEB editors read this week.
What’s missing from the fiscal cliff debate: Growth
(The Washington Post)
“What we don’t want is to continue toward a scenario in which, 20 years from now, we look back and say that the U.S. economy was basically vibrant but its political system seized up, dooming the country to a Japanese fate.”
Focus on Health-Care Costs Causes More Spending
“In health care, our system is designed to shield patients from even knowing the prices. Unfortunately, a world without prices is also one that can’t achieve the purpose of prices: the allocation of resources to match what consumers want.”
“In today’s abnormally low interest-rate environment, perhaps the hunt for yield should be abandoned in favor of the hunt for institutions that can guarantee services an aging population will need to sustain itself. Would you buy a retirement-service annuity from a utility company? How about from a pharmaceutical company? An oil & gas company? Do you trust them—or like them—any less than your local insurance company?”
So everyone has health insurance. Now what?
(Boston Business Journal)
“The truth is the quality of our collective coverage is deteriorating ... and getting more expensive. It’s a sobering fact that many of us are all too acquainted with, having just stumbled through the jumble of information provided during our insurers’ open-enrollment periods.”
Companies Prepare for Health Law
(Wall Street Journal)
“Indeed, splitting the workforce by pushing certain workers toward the exchanges is an idea that might face barriers from regulators, though detailed rules for meeting nondiscrimination standards haven't yet been issued. ‘We have to wait and see what regulatory agencies develop,’ said Julie Stich, director of research at the benefit-plans foundation.”
Fiscal cliff was bound to collapse
“How silly it all seems now. Of course the supercommittee failed. Why would anyone think that a congressional committee could magically come up with a bipartisan solution that has been so elusive for so long? And of course the fiscal cliff turned out to be a dud. Why would we have thought otherwise?”
Post-cliff, life insurance a tougher sell
“Life insurance, for instance, can still play a vital role in establishing trusts for families with special-needs children or for small-business owners. Further, it can ensure that clients leave a legacy for their children while permitting those investors to squeeze returns from their own investments.”
Not Your Momma’s Financial Advisor
“You’re either going to bury your head in the sand and pretend that things aren’t changing, or you’re going to be on the front of it, saying, ‘You know what? I’m not speaking to this younger generation, and I might lose my older clients because what I’m doing is not current,’” Duran says."