2020 Life & Retirement Virtual Conference Agenda

All times listed are Eastern Daylight Time.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

11:00 am - 11:10 am - Welcome and Opening Remarks

11:10 am - 12:00 pm - GENERAL SESSION

Understanding the Global Economy: Navigating the Low Interest Rate Environment

With monetary and fiscal demands caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, what do we expect going forward in terms of continued monetary support?  In 2019 alone, central banks cut interest rates 71 times, but in 2020, the global economic shutdown has required continued stimulus measures, both fiscal and monetary. With global economies and markets being supported by central bank monetary stimulus, will they be able to respond to these aggressive policies? Will they require heavier doses of fiscal aid? Moreover, with interest rates remaining historically low, how much ammunition will central banks really have? Join Quincy Krosby to understand how today’s monetary environment will impact the financial services industry, and how navigating markets in an environment of seemingly “lower for even longer” rates will require a search for yields across all asset classes.

Quincy Krosby, Ph.D. - Chief Market Strategist, Prudential Financial, Inc.

12:00 pm - 12:30 pm - Break

Visit the virtual exhibit hall.

12:30 pm - 1:30 pm: BREAKOUT SESSIONS

1.1 Survey Says . . . Trends in Accelerated Underwriting
Mary Lesch, Ph.D., Associate Research Director, LIMRA
Lisa Seeman, FSA, MAAA, Second Vice President and Actuary, Munich Re
Dave Goehrke, Assistant Vice President, Business Development, UW Client Solutions, Moderator

Accelerated underwriting (AUW) is a hot topic in the life Insurance Industry, so it’s no surprise that multiple industry surveys have been conducted in an attempt to get a pulse on where the industry is at. What have we learned from these surveys? How is AUW evolving over time? What do we expect from AUW moving forward in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic? We’ll answer these questions and more as we dive into the results of both the recent LIMRA and Munich Re accelerated underwriting surveys.

1.2 The Sky is Falling! How Plunging Financial Markets Could Impact the Annuity Market
Todd Giesing, Senior Director, Annuity Research, Secure Retirement Institute
Teddy Panaitisor, Senior Research Analyst, Secure Retirement Institute

As economies expand and contract, periods of recession are a natural part of the economic cycle. The United States is experiencing its longest bull market run in history, with the equity market continuing to shatter records day after day. The signals are there for the next recession to impact the U.S. markets in the near future, and investors and annuity manufacturers are concerned with how it will impact them in the future. Join this session on recession-based scenarios to explore how recessions have impacted the individual annuity market in the past and the impact to investors.

1.3 This Session Has Been Cancelled

This session has been cancelled.

1.4 How Tech is Transforming DC
Benjamin Thomason, Executive Vice President, Revenue, Vestwell

Join us for a discussion of how tech trends are changing the very foundation of DC plans, recordkeeping, and investments . . . and the value proposition for all concerned. Hear from new players who are introducing new business models for DC plans.

1:30 pm - 2:00 pm - Break

Visit the virtual exhibit hall.

2:00 pm - 3:00 pm: BREAKOUT SESSIONS

2.1 Underwriting in 2020 and Beyond: Opportunities and Challenges Impacting Risk Selection
JJ Carroll, Vice President, Product Development and Innovation, AAA Life Insurance Company
Karen Phelan, Vice President, Underwriting Strategy and Innovation, PartnerRe
Jessica Caracofe, R.N., Vice President, Underwriting, AgencyONE, LLC, Moderator

Critical to every life insurance company is the ability to accurately assess and predict risk. Yet never before has that task been more challenging. We’re in an age of increased innovation in the underwriting space with the introduction of new data sets, advent of accelerated underwriting, Insurtech, omni-channel distribution, a consumer experience focus and changing regulatory and societal standards. In this session we’ll explore various topics impacting underwriting today, share insights and discuss the dynamics and new developments in this evolving landscape that promises more change yet to come...

2.2 In-Plan Income: Will There Be Demand?
Mark Foley, Managing Director, Head of Retirement Plan Default Solutions, TIAA
Jana Steele, Senior Vice President, Defined Contribution Consultant, Callan
Diane Smola, Aon

Now that the SECURE Act has passed, the next question is will plan sponsors add in-plan distribution options? Has the game changed with the SECURE Act addressing fiduciary concerns, demographics driving need, fintech advancing to deliver greater efficiency, and Financial Wellness programs articulating annuity fit? This session will look to go inside and anticipate the plan sponsor and participant thought process for adopting various in-plan distribution options, identify current/potential product offerings and success stories, as well as discuss the implications of plan sponsor action or inaction on the broader retirement and annuity marketplace, both now and in the future.

2.3 Digital Transformation – On Track or Slowing Down?
Kimberly Harris-Ferrante, Vice President and Distinguished Analyst, Gartner

Digital Transformation is a primary area of focus for many life insurance companies to address and meet the changing needs of the business and policyholders.  However digital needs have shifted drastically in 2020 as a result of industry disruption. Even the most mature insurers are revisiting their digital strategies to make them match industry needs, including being more conservative with IT spend and facing tough questions about new consumer needs.  This session will examine the new normal that the life insurance industry will face in 2021 and how insurers are using digital to help them prepare for that future. 

3:00 pm - Adjournment

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

11:00 am - 12:00 pm: SPECIAL FOCUS SESSIONS

Here We Go Again: Retirement Regulatory Update
Ben Norquist, CPC, President/CEO, Convergent Retirement Plan Solutions, LLC

Every year, we say that it's never been a more active time in regulatory focus in the DC industry, and it's true every year. Join us for an up-to-date expert interpretation of the current legislative and regulatory climate for DC stakeholders.

Customer Experience in Our Industry: What Are Companies Really Doing and Where Is CX Going?
Andrea Clark, Assistant Vice President, Experience Strategy, Western & Southern Financial Group
Chris Dickinson, Senior Principal, Insurance Operations Excellence, NEOS
Todd Silverhart, Ph.D., Corporate Vice President and Director, Research Quality and Performance, LIMRA

This session will highlight results from a recent LIMRA and NEOS study examining current customer experience practices. The study was conducted to better understand the challenges and opportunities that life insurance and annuities carriers face, the effectiveness of their efforts, and how these efforts are being prioritized to shape the organization’s future state. Examining results through the lens of a customer experience maturity model, recommendations will be made to guide companies in the evolution of their programs.

12:00 pm - 12:30 pm - Break

Visit the virtual exhibit hall.

12:30 pm - 1:30 pm: BREAKOUT SESSIONS

3.1 What Does Success Look Like in Digital Transformation?
Justin George, CISM, MCPM, Assistant Vice President, Life Administration and Inforce Systems Development, Lincoln Financial Group
Kim Pfiffner, FLMI, Vice President and Chief Information Officer of U.S. Insurance Solutions, Principal Financial Group, Inc.
Kartik Sakthivel, Chief Information Officer, LIMRA, LOMA, and LL Global, Inc., Moderator

Resources invested in digital transformation initiatives in financial services over the past decade are significant and immeasurable. The return on the investment is also significant and likely immeasurable. Which raises the questions, what does success with digital transformation in financial services – insurance, annuities, and retirement, look like, and what steps can be taken to increase the likelihood of success? A panel of financial services technology leaders will provide their insight and opine on their digital transformation journey and what success looks like in our industry.

3.2 Recent Trends on Fixed Indexed Annuities and Structured Annuities Product Development
Nicholas Carbo, FSA, MAAA, Principal, Oliver Wyman
Andrew Phillips, FSA, MAAA, Assistant Vice President, Lincoln Financial

The presenters will review and discuss the recent trends in fixed indexed annuities and structured annuities product development. There will be a comparison of the differences and similarities between these two types of products. A discussion will be had on how insurance carriers may effectively manage the capital market risk from derivative hedging perspective for the both products.

3.3 What Can Advanced Analytics Do For You?
Jennifer Kelly, ALMI, ACS, Data Scientist II, Marketing CS, Ameritas Life Investment Corp
David Moore, FSA, MAAA, Assistant Vice President and Advanced Analytics Leader, Nationwide Financial
Vikram Kamath, Director of Analytics, LIMRA, Moderator

Insurance companies are increasingly leveraging the power of data and analytics to answer questions, drive decisions, and improve their bottom line. They are deploying cutting-edge analytics applications to boost their efforts in distribution, marketing, and other company functions. Join us for a panel discussion on what companies are doing in the life and retirement analytics space right now, what cool things are possible, and what leading experts in the field see as its future.

1:30 pm - 2:00 pm - Break

Visit the virtual exhibit hall.

2:00 pm - 3:00 pm: BREAKOUT SESSIONS

4.1 How AI Is Transforming Underwriting, Marketing, Sales, and Financial Estimations
David Kwon, FSRI, ALMI, AIRC, IBM Industry Academy Member, Associate Partner, Enterprise Strategy and iX
Sankar Virdhagiswaran, Big Data & Emerging Technology Sales and Strategy Lead, IBM

This presentation will cover how AI is transforming underwriting, marketing and sales, and reserve estimations in life insurance. With regard to underwriting, this session will address the use of medical data, digital insights from social media and click stream analytics as well as the use of smart workflow to improve the insurance underwriting process and the digital experience. Learn about the use of a cognitive assistant during the sales and marketing process and the use of machine learning for better reserve estimation for life insurance products.

4.2 Asset Managers: Why Annuities Are an Efficient Asset Class
Scott Bowers, National Sales Manager, Blackrock Retirement Insurance Group
John J. Holmgren, President and COO, Zebra Capital

American Funds, Blackrock and Zebra Capital have all conducted research on how annuities can be incorporated into a client’s portfolio to provide more efficient portfolio returns and eliminate the risks of running out of money in retirement. The role of guaranteed lifetime income in a retirement portfolio is becoming a hot topic in the asset management industry so this session will provide a perspective around guaranteed lifetime income from an asset manager’s lens.

4.3 The Olympics of the Retirement Market: Who Wins the Gold Medal?
R. Dale Hall, FSA, MAAA, CFA, CERA, Managing Director of Research, Society of Actuaries
Alison Salka, Ph.D., Senior Vice President and Director, Research, LIMRA

LIMRA and the SOA have recently looked at retirement risks and consumer attitudes in the United States, Canada, Asia Pacific markets and Latin America markets. How does the US market stack up against consumer sentiments, the use of financial advisors and retirement product interests around the world? Come hear the about the product features and retirement desires of US consumers and see which other markets are contending for the race for the Retirement Market Gold Medal.

3:00 pm - Adjournment