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Lincoln National's (LNC) Reinsurance Deal to Aid Annuity Suite

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Lincoln National Corporation LNC recently reached a flow reinsurance agreement with the risk management solutions provider Talcott Resolution Life Insurance Company.

The deal paves the way for the company to reinsure its flagship variable annuity living benefit rider sales of up to $1.5 billion. Only those businesses will be offered coverage through the transaction, which are issued between Apr 1, 2021 and Jun 30, 2022 period. Besides, Lincoln National will continue to execute account administration and recordkeeping of the policies as part of the reinsurance agreement.

The latest move reinforces Lincoln National’s sincere efforts to ink block and flow deals with the leading reinsurers for protecting its businesses against considerable losses. The deal also aims to return value to the company’s shareholders as it usually resorts to shareholder-friendly moves through share buybacks and regular dividend payments.

Recently, it inked a reinsurance deal with the well-established life insurance group Resolution Life’s unit, which is expected to produce capital worth $1.2 billion. The transaction proceeds will be utilized to pursue $900 million of incremental share buybacks and with the leftover funds, the company intends to primarily pay off debts.

The recent agreement also marks the company’s endeavor to bolster its variable annuity business, which contains a significant portion of policies with living benefit riders. Earlier, life insurance policies encompassed the death-benefit option but the COVID-19 pandemic necessitated the re-evaluation of policies by the life insurance providers. As a case in point, Lincoln National intensified its focus on rolling out policies with living benefits, considering the growing inclination of customers toward availing benefits while alive.

The company also resorts to constant product introductions and enhancement of the existing ones across its variable annuity business. This continues to drive revenues at the company’s Annuities segment, which in turn, contributes to overall revenues.

It’s worth mentioning that Lincoln National tends to chase a long-term growth strategy of altering its business mix to include more products without long-term guarantees that are less affected by interest rates. This looks commendable as a low interest rate environment is expected to prevail across the United States.

Deals similar to the latest one highlight the importance of reinsurance agreements for most insurers whose operations remain susceptible to natural disasters or other severe events. When a reinsurance agreement is inked, a reinsurer agrees to pay a specific portion of the claims reported against an insurance company, which in return, pays a reinsurance premium.

Claims reported can often result in draining cash reserves for an insurer, which might hurt its financial health. In such a situation, a reinsurer can come to its rescue by sharing a particular portion of the risks, thereby leading to reduced losses, accelerated claims management and improved underwriting results for the insurance companies.

The prevalence of an active reinsurance market coupled with robust pricing makes the latest flow reinsurance deal of Lincoln National aptly timed.

Zacks Rank & Price Performance

Shares of Lincoln National, which carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at present, have soared 120.2% in a year compared with the industry’s growth of 8.7%.

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Zacks Investment Research

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Other Stocks to Consider

Some other top-ranked stocks in the life insurance space include Brighthouse Financial, Inc. BHF, Primerica, Inc. PRI and Voya Financial, Inc. VOYA, each carrying a Zacks Rank of 2, currently. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Brighthouse Financial, Primerica and Voya Financial have a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 52.23%, 7.55% and 9.13%, respectively, on average.

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Lincoln National Corporation (LNC) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Primerica, Inc. (PRI) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Voya Financial, Inc. (VOYA) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Brighthouse Financial, Inc. (BHF) : Free Stock Analysis Report

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