MetLife Unveils Deferred Income Annuity

April 27, 2004 ( - Employees have a new retirement savings alternative to consider with word from MetLife Retirement & Savings that it launched a deferred income annuity for purchase through payroll deduction.

A MetLife news release said its Personal Pension Builder provides employees with the ability to accumulate future guaranteed income for retirement while they’re still working.

“Having a source of guaranteed income for life is critical, as many people underestimate just how long retirement will last and how much it will cost,” Dorit Murciano, vice president, MetLife Retirement & Savings, said in the announcement. “Personal Pension Builder is intended to help employees achieve their retirement goals by creating future income today. Simply stated, it’s like a ‘personal pension plan’ — combining the personal savings features of a 401(k) plan with the guarantees of a traditional pension plan.”

The new product has two phases – the accumulation phase, during which employees may purchase — through payroll deduction — guaranteed sources of future income, and the retirement phase , during which employees receive a fixed monthly income for as long as they live.

The accumulation phase offers four guarantees:

  • a specific income benefit amount purchased at today’s prices
  • the income the worker accumulates for retirement is guaranteed for life
  • the interest rate used to calculate the future price for income benefits will never be less than 3%
  • the beneficiary will receive a death benefit of premium accumulated at 3% if the employee dies during the accumulation period.

Additional product benefits include, according to MetLife:

  • the option to “dollar cost average” into a future income stream, as each contribution is guaranteed based on current rates
  • the flexibility to adjust contributions and to make lump sum contributions at any time to ensure the desired level of income at retirement
  • the ability to select income options that provide continuing income to someone else in the event of death
  • the option of taking some or all of the accumulated income benefit in cash within 60 days following the benefit start date.