The Hartford has launched an offshore bond, The Hartford Diamond, offering income and capital guaran...
The Hartford has launched an offshore bond, The Hartford Diamond, offering income and capital guarantees.
The contract is the US life firm's fourth product in the UK, and uses the same underlying fund range as its Gold onshore bond, Platinum personal pension product and trustee investment plan.
The underlying fund range has been expanded across the product range for the new launch, and now features 113 funds selected by Old Broad Street Research, covering all the main asset classes (except single-country emerging markets funds, which are deemed too risky) through fund groups including Artemis, BlackRock, Gartmore and Fidelity.
For those advisers and clients who do not want to self-select from this range, there is also a suite of risk-rated portfolios put together by asset allocation specialists Ibbotson Associates.
The Hartford calls its income guarantee 'Safety Net'. This is available over 20 years at 5% of the original fund value, or for life on payment of a premium. Up to 10% growth on the underlying portfolio can be locked in annually.
The capital guarantee means the minimum beneficiaries will receive is the original investment less any withdrawals, regardless of what has happened to the underlying fund value.
Andy Marks, managing director of sales at the Hartford UK, commented: "For people now, there's a big feeling of emotional risk about coming into the market. They can see the value but they are concerned about the pot they have accumulated. We can offer clients reassurance that their income is taken care of, so that over a longer period their investments with their IFA can be left to grow - the head is ruling because they know what their minimum income is, and that can't go down."
The firm is targeting the UK IFA market with the product, which it says lends itself equally well to meeting the needs of trust arrangements as for clients moving abroad, and even as a supplement to retirement planning.
"We want to start in our core market, and make sure the proposition gets traction here," said Marks. "The UK is a wonderful and growing market for offshore products - we can help broaden and shape that market because of our guarantees."
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