Boomers drawn to protection and potential market growth
TSX/NYSE/PSE: MFC; SEHK: 0945
TORONTO, Jan. 15 /CNW/ - In just more than 14 months since its original
launch, sales of GIF Select featuring IncomePlus ended 2007 at almost $3.4
billion. In December alone, sales reached a record $680 million for Canada's
first Guaranteed Minimum Withdrawal Benefit (GMWB) product designed to help
Canadians save, protect and grow their retirement savings.
Launched in October 2006 by Manulife Investments, IncomePlus appeals to
Canadian boomers entering the "Retirement Risk Zone" - the five-to-ten years
before and after they reach retirement - when their portfolios are most
vulnerable to market downturns and volatility as witnessed in recent weeks.
IncomePlus provides guaranteed monthly payments independent of when an
investor retires in the market cycle, as well as growth potential, flexibility
"Canadians have shown they understand and see a definite need in their
financial plans for this type of product, similar to the strong appeal we've
seen for similar products in the U.S.," said J. Roy Firth, Executive Vice
President, Manulife Financial. "The popularity of these products with
Canadians speaks to the current mindset of today's boomer - they want
protection when markets are volatile and growth when markets are good. This
product gives them that, and more."
In October 2007, Manulife Investments enhanced IncomePlus to provide
investors with guaranteed monthly income for life, to address a growing
financial concern among older Canadians of outliving their savings. With
IncomePlus, investors have downside protection for their principal investment;
upside potential that can increase payments for life; flexibility and control
over investments with complete access to the market value of their funds at
anytime if needed.
In addition, investors now receive a five per cent bonus on their
guaranteed income for each year they don't make a withdrawal, for up to 15
years. That means investors can better plan for retirement knowing that their
guaranteed income for life can increase each year, regardless of market
IncomePlus includes a wide range of funds managed by some of the top fund
managers in Canada. The Canadian Investment Awards has also recently
recognized IncomePlus as a powerful retirement solution awarding IncomePlus
with "best new initiative" in 2007. In addition, Manulife remains the only
financial institution in Canada with a "AAA" S&P credit rating to offer a GMWB
For more details, please visit Manulife Investments' website at:
About Manulife Investments
Manulife Investments is the brand name describing certain Canadian
subsidiaries and operating divisions of Manulife Financial Corporation that
offer personal wealth management products and services in Canada. As one of
Canada's leading integrated financial services providers, Manulife Investments
offers a variety of products and services including segregated funds, mutual
funds, annuities and guaranteed investment contracts.
About Manulife Financial
Manulife Financial is 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$399.0 billion
(US$400.5 billion) as at September 30, 2007.
Manulife Financial is one of two publicly traded life insurance companies
in North America whose rated life insurance subsidiaries hold Standard &
Poor's Rating Services' highest "AAA" rating and Moody's Investor Services'
second highest "Aa1" rating, both representing financial strength.
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
For further information:
For further information: Media contact: Tom Nunn, Manulife Financial,
(519) 594-8578, email@example.com