What will we be going over in this review of the new Symetra Stride Fixed Indexed Annuity?In this review of the Stride fixed indexed annuity from Symetra, we will be going over the following important details:
- Type of annuity
- Realistic performance expectations
- Where the annuity is best used
- How the annuity is most poorly used
Annuities can be complex. That’s where having an Annuity Investigator who loves math comes in. At Annuity Gator, we make the complex, simple.Over the past several years, the fixed indexed annuity, or FIA, has become popular as a way to generate market-linked returns while at the same time keeping principal safe regardless of whether equities move up or down. Plus, like other annuities, the fixed indexed annuity can also provide an ongoing stream of income, either for a set period of time, or for the remainder of your lifetime – regardless of how long you need it. In order to stay competitive in the marketplace, more insurance carriers are adding fixed indexed annuities to their lineups – and are also adding various bells and whistles in order to make these annuities stand out. One example is the newly released Stride fixed indexed annuity from Symetra. But, prior to going out and making a long-term commitment to purchase this – or any other – annuity, it is important to have a good understanding of how the annuity works, and whether or not it will actually fit in with your short and long-term financial objectives. It is also essential that you separate the “hype” from the reality in terms of how fixed indexed annuities work. For instance, many people feel that FIAs offer a “best of both worlds” scenario. Why? Well, for one thing, these annuities provide the ability to attain a return that is linked to an underlying market index (or multiple market indices) such as the S&P 500. But, if the market index performs poorly, you don’t have to worry about losing your hard-earned principal. On top of that, the growth that takes place inside of the annuity is tax-deferred, meaning that there is no tax due on this gain until the time it is withdrawn – and that can allow for a nice compounding of your funds. The guaranteed income factor is nice, too, because this can help to alleviate the concern about running out of money while you still need it in retirement. But first, there are some things you need to be aware of, such as how much it could “cost” you to get out of an annuity if you discover after you purchase it that it really isn’t going to do what you want it to do. This is where the Annuity Gator comes in!
Annuity and Retirement Income Planning Advice that You Can TrustIf this is the first time that you have been to our website, we would like to personally welcome you here to AnnuityGator.com. We make up a team of experienced financial professionals who are dedicated to providing in-depth reviews of annuity products. We’ve been doing this for a number of years now – far longer than most of our “copycat” competitors – and because of that, we have come to be known as a highly trusted source of annuity information online. If you’ve been looking for information about annuities via the Internet, then it is likely that you have come across many conflicting details about these financial vehicles. This isn’t really very surprising, though, because there are a lot of opinions (both positive and otherwise) about these products floating around the Internet. Although there are actually many different websites online that focus on providing annuity products and information, there are some that will attempt to lure you in with some pretty bold claims like:
- Lowest fees
- Highest income payouts
- Guaranteed lifetime income
- Top-rated companies
The Symetra Stride Fixed Indexed Annuity at a Glance
|Type of Product||Single Premium Fixed Indexed Annuity|
|A.M. Best Rating||A (Excellent)|
|Phone Number||(800) 796-3872|
Opening Thoughts on the Symetra Stride Fixed Indexed AnnuitySymetra is backed by more than $55 billion in assets (as of year-end 2019), and its parent company, Sumitomo Life, is one of the largest life insurance companies in Japan – and together, Sumitomo Life and Symetra, have total assets of over $300 billion. Established in 1957, Symetra offers a wide array of wealth protection and retirement products, including fixed and fixed indexed annuities, as well as term, permanent, universal, bank-owned, and corporate-owned life insurance. Due to its financial strength and stability, as well as its positive reputation for paying out policyholders’ claims, Symetra is highly rated by the insurer rating agencies. In addition to earning an A from A.M. Best, these ratings include an A from Standard & Poor’s, and an A1 from Moody’s. Over the past several years, due in large part to the continuous ups and downs of the stock market, the demand for fixed indexed annuities has increased substantially. One reason for this is because, in addition to keeping principal safe (in any market condition), these financial vehicles can also provide you with the opportunity to earn market-linked growth, as well as a set amount of income that could last you for the remainder of your lifetime. Yet, even though this might sound like a win-win-win situation, the reality is that if something sounds like it may be too good to be true, then it typically is – so you should ideally get as much in-depth detail as possible if you are considering committing to it for the long term.
Before we get into the gritty details, here are some necessary legal disclosures…This is an independent annuity product review. It is not a recommendation to purchase or to sell an annuity. Symetra has not endorsed this review in any way, nor do we receive any type of compensation for providing this review. This annuity review is meant solely to be an independent review at the request of our readers so that they may see our perspective when breaking down the positives and the negatives of this particular annuity. Prior to committing to the purchase of any type of insurance and/or investment vehicle, it is critical that you do your own due diligence, and that you also talk with a properly licensed professional if you have any questions that relate to your specific situation. All of the names, materials, and marks that have been used in compiling this annuity review are the property of their respective owners. For additional information on how to compare fixed annuities so that you can decide which may be the best one for you, click here in order to obtain our free annuity report.
How Symetra Describes the Stride Fixed Indexed AnnuityThe Symetra Stride annuity is described as a single premium fixed indexed annuity product that offers growth potential that is based on three indexes – which includes the new Putnam Dynamic Low Volatility Excess Return Index. This index pursues attractive returns with a focus on controlling volatility and protecting against downside market risk. This particular index combines three different asset classes, including:
- Low-risk U.S. stocks
- U.S. Treasury bonds
- JPMorgan ETF Efficiente 5 Index
- S&P 500 Index
- Nursing Home and Hospitalization Waiver – If you are confined to a nursing home or a hospital for at least 30 consecutive days, Symetra will waive your withdrawal charges and market value adjustments. The insurance company will also waive those charges and market value adjustments for up to 90 days after your release.
- Terminal Illness Waiver – If you are diagnosed with a terminal illness after your annuity contract is issued, Symetra will waive withdrawal charges and applicable market value adjustments after your first contract year.
- Death Benefit – Upon your passing, one or more named beneficiaries will receive the contract value of the annuity – which does not reflect any current withdrawal charge or market value adjustment – or the cash surrender value – whichever is more.
How an Insurance or Financial Advisor Might “Pitch” this AnnuityToday, people are living much longer than ever before – and, while that can be positive in many respects, it can also bring about the worry of outliving your income in retirement. With many people who are preparing for retirement being concerned about growing their savings, while at the same time keeping their principal safe, it is possible that an insurance or financial advisor would present this annuity as a vehicle for accomplishing both of those goals. Plus, there is also the option to choose income for life with this annuity. What the agent may or may not heavily focus on, however, is the “fine print” – which can more clearly explain some of the “tradeoffs” that you’ll need to make in order to garner some of the benefits. For example, there is an added premium charge to add the Guaranteed Lifetime Withdrawal Benefit. So, it is necessary to determine whether or not this additional cost will really enhance the benefit. In addition to that, the Stride annuity from Symetra comes with a rather lengthy surrender charge period of ten years. This means that if you withdraw more than 7% of the contract value over the first decade that you own the annuity, you will incur a penalty.
Symetra Stride Fixed Indexed Annuity Surrender Charge Schedule
The Annuity Gator’s End Take on the Symetra Stride Fixed Indexed Annuity:Where it works best: This particular annuity will usually work the best for those who are looking for:
- The opportunity to obtain a higher rate of growth than that of a regular fixed annuity
- Safety of principal
- Lifetime income (in any type of market environment)
- Want or need to access their funds penalty-free within the 10-year surrender charge period (and/or before they turn age 59 ½)
- Do not intend to use the guaranteed lifetime income feature