Up 15% over previous record in 2005
Boston – John Hancock Financial Services said today that full year sales of variable annuities reached a record $9.1 billion in 2006, up from their previous record of $7.9 billion in 2005. This full year increase of 15% marks the third consecutive year John Hancock has achieved record variable annuity sales growth.
“These outstanding results reflect our ongoing commitment to developing simple solutions financial advisors can use to help meet their customers’ retirement income needs, and the growing recognition that John Hancock’s superior financial strength stands behind the promises we make,” said Hugh McHaffie, President of John Hancock Wealth Management. He added: “We are very proud of everyone in our talented organization who worked so hard to attain such exceptional results in 2006, and to set the stage for continued success in 2007.”
Bob Cassato, Executive Vice President of Distribution, John Hancock Financial Services, said: “We established an early presence in the guaranteed lifetime income market, and have continued to deliver innovative solutions that balance John Hancock’s disciplined approach with straightforward design and simple positioning. I believe the results show that advisors and their clients appreciate our approach.”
Standard & Poor’s upgraded John Hancock’s financial strength rating to AAA, making John Hancock the highest S&P-rated public company offering variable annuities with lifetime withdrawal benefits.
The expansion of John Hancock’s portfolio of optional withdrawal benefits in October 2006 was well-received by the marketplace. John Hancock added annual step and spousal versions of its popular Principal Plus For Life withdrawal benefit option, while retaining theClassic version, which remains among the most popular lifetime withdrawal benefits offered through the broker/dealer community. Principal Plus For Life can only be elected at issue and is irrevocable. Only one version of Principal Plus For Life may be elected per contract. Additional fees, restrictions and limitations apply. See the prospectus for full details.
Several major new distribution partnerships were formed during 2006, including Morgan Stanley, which solidifies John Hancock’s strong position in the wirehouse distribution channel, and JP Morgan Chase, which significantly expands John Hancock’s footprint in the fast-growing bank distribution channel.
Throughout the year, John Hancock improved the overall competitiveness of its variable annuity product suite through strategic enhancements to the Venture Variable Annuity, now offered with lower fees and a competitive dollar cost averaging (DCA) program, and the Venture Vantage Variable Annuity, now offering higher payment enhancements on every deposit customers make. Dollar cost averaging does not assure a profit or protect against loss. Systematic investing involves continuous investment in securities regardless of price level fluctuation. Investors should weigh their ability to sustain investments during periods of market downturns. Any fixed rates credited will be paid on a declining balance.
John Hancock’s popular Lifestyle portfolios, which provide investors a simple way to obtain a professionally managed, balanced retirement portfolio, continued to gather substantial assets. The Lifestyle portfolios, which now boast true 10-year performance track records, reflect John Hancock’s commitment to promoting a diversified investment approach.
John Hancock Annuities launched www.jhannuities.com, a new and more functional website for both the client and advisor audiences in early December 2006. In addition to increased user-friendliness, this new website offers many valuable online tools and resources for financial advisors.
About Manulife Financial and John Hancock
John Hancock is a unit of Manulife Financial Corporation, a leading Canadian-based financial services group serving millions of customers in 19 countries and territories worldwide. Operating as Manulife Financial in Canada and Asia, and primarily through John Hancock in the United States, the Company offers clients a diverse range of financial protection products and wealth management services through its extensive network of employees, agents and distribution partners. Funds under management by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were Cdn$414 billion (US$355 billion) as at December 31, 2006.
Manulife Financial Corporation trades as ‘MFC’ on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under ‘0945’ on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the Internet at www.manulife.com.
The John Hancock unit, through its insurance companies, comprises one of the largest life insurers in the United States. John Hancock offers a broad range of financial products and services, including life insurance, fixed and variable annuities, mutual funds, 401(k) plans, long term care insurance, college savings, and other forms of business insurance.
Contact your financial consultant or visit www.jhannuities.com for more information, including a prospectus that contains complete details on investment objectives, risks, fees, charges and expenses as well as other information about the investment company, which should be carefully considered. Please read the prospectus carefully prior to investing. The prospectus contains this and other information on the product and the underlying portfolios.
It is important to understand that Principal Plus For Life is an optional benefit available with Venture Variable Annuity contracts and cannot be elected without purchasing the annuity contract. This benefit may not be appropriate for investors who do not foresee a need for liquidity and whose primary focus is tax deferral. Before considering this benefit, please make sure the annuity is suitable for your investment goals and personal circumstances.
Payment enhancements are considered to be earnings and are taxable as ordinary income upon withdrawal. Payment enhancement annuities will impose higher M&E charges and longer surrender charges than their non-payment enhancement counterparts. See the prospectus for full details.
Venture Annuities and the optional riders are not available in all states; product features may vary, subject to state regulation. Variable annuities are not FDIC insured, are long-term contracts designed for retirement purposes and are subject to investment risk, including the possible loss of principal. Withdrawal charges apply to withdrawals taken in excess of the free withdrawal amount during the surrender charge period. All withdrawals reduce the death benefit and optional benefits. In addition, withdrawals of taxable amounts will be subject to ordinary income tax and, if made prior to age 59½, a 10% IRS penalty tax may apply.
Venture Annuities are issued and administered by John Hancock Life Insurance Company (U.S.A.), a Bloomfield Hills, MI, company with its annuity service office in Boston, MA. Venture Combination Fixed and Variable Annuities are distributed byJohn Hancock Distributors LLC, member NASD.
--Not FDIC Insured
--Not Bank Guaranteed
--May Lose Value
--Not a Deposit
--Not Insured by Any Government Agency
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