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Financial Growth
Products and Rates Comparison

Alternatives to Traditional Banking Products - FAQs


What are Traditional Banking Products?

  • Money Market Accounts

  • Savings Account and Statement Savings Accounts

  • Certificates of Deposits - CDs

  • Checking Accounts


What are alternatives to Traditional Banking Products that offer protection similar to what is found with FDIC backed accounts?

  • Fixed Annuities and Fixed Index Annuities – these annuity products are issued by insurance companies and come with the backing of the issuing insurance company and in most states the guarantees of the State Guarantee Associations.

  • Short Term Flexible Premium Fixed Annuities – these are contracts that offer very short term surrender charge periods with the ability to make contributions and withdrawals on a regular basis.

  • Equity Linked CDs – offer the protection of FDIC insurance, with the ability to participate in the performance of the stock (and/or bond) markets. Most contracts offer a guaranteed minimum return.

  • Brokered CDs are CDs that come with the backing of the FDIC and offered through investment brokers. Many of these contracts are "callable" which means that the issuing bank may "call" the CD by returning the principal to the investor.

  • Structured Settlement Annuities – these are contracts that have the same protection offered by traditional annuities but are purchased on the secondary market. These contracts were originally issued as part of a legal settlement. The owners of the contracts sometimes decide to sell the contracts in exchange for a lump sum of cash today. The new purchaser buys the future cash-flow at a discounted rate from the original owner.


Can these products be owned inside an IRA? 

  • Yes – but it is important to note that not all IRA Custodians allow every type of investment to be held in IRA accounts that they offer.

  • Fixed Annuities and Fixed Index Annuities can be purchased with IRA funds, and the issuing insurance company often acts as the Custodian of the funds deposited.


How can these products be laddered to create a reliable income stream?

  • Combining of several of the products listed above can create a safe money (principal protected) portfolio of investments with the objective of either creating ongoing interest income or future lump sum payouts.

  • Utilizing shorter term annuities with longer term Structured Settlement Annuities can create a laddered portfolio with the flexibility of the WAL – Weighted Average Life.

    • A WAL – Weighted Average Life – is calculated by determining how long it will take for 50% of the invested portfolio to mature and become accessible.


How do brokers get compensated for placing these types of products for their clients?

  • Typically these investment products pay an upfront, one time, commission to the broker who places them.

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