Tax-deferred, indexed annuities are an important part of a conservative retirement and investment portfolio, They are designed to grow your assets tax deferred while offering the potential growth of the market index.
They are insurance contracts, most of which provide penalty-free liquidity through annual withdrawals of interest earned, or up to 10% of accumulated value. However, most are designed for long-term investment, so there are surrender charges for the indicated period of time should more than the allowed amounts be withdrawn.
Some offer income options within 30 days of issue. Some can be cashed in penalty-free in as little as 2 years. Some offer loan provisions of 50% - 85% of accumulated value with a net interest gain. Many include terminal illness and nursing home confinement benefits.
During retirement, they can provide a guaranteed steady stream of income if you desire. You may elect a series of payments for a determined period of time, for a certain number of years, or for the rest of your life. Payments can begin right away, or can be deferred. If policy design allows, owners or beneficiaries may take a lump sum payout, or spread the payments out over a number of years for a tax advantage.
For more information on Annuities please review the publication titled "Understanding Annuities" provided by the Texas Department of Insurance.
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