With March market drops worrying advisors and investors alike, DPL Financial Partners is opening its network of annuities and related insurance products to nonmembers, at no charge, until June 1. While the official announcement is expected to come on Wednesday, free access is available immediately through the firm’s website and by telephone.
While a pandemic and portfolio divot is never good news, investors on the cusp of retirement or those having recently entered retirement are particularly vulnerable to market fluctuations, said David Lau, founder and CEO of DPL. That’s because retirement-focused “sequence of returns,” or what assets are utilized at which stage in decumulation, is a key variable in a successful retirement outcome.
“Sequence of returns risk is a real threat to retirees—both financially and emotionally—and annuities are uniquely suited to address this,” said Lau. “Given that so many RIA clients are in investments-only portfolios, they have been especially hard hit by this financial crisis. Driven by demand from their clients, many advisors have reached out for principal protection and secure income options.”
DPL is experiencing “a surge in requests” as advisors reached out for help in protecting clients’ retirement savings, said Lau. “Consumers are particularly attentive to protective strategies at this time.”
But that’s not necessarily good news for advisors. Financial advisors who charge on an AUM basis are being hit by both the market drop and seeing assets pulled as clients turn to outside agents to buy annuities.
That’s why DPL, with nearly 3,000 advisors in its network who pay between $1,000 and $5,000 in fees based on AUM, is opening up to nonmembers, offering commission-free products to advisors. Even for investors who have taken a sizable hit to their portfolios, for those younger than 80 years old, there are opportunities to sell positions in investors’ portfolios, even conservative investments, and buy annuities, said Lau.
“At this point, it’s not too late,” said Lau. “For those in or near retirement, now can be an opportunistic time to get out of fixed income positions and buy an income stream in retirement.”
“Sometimes you need a wake-up call,” he added.