Our 2017 plans for behavioral analytics



Are your assumptions informed by credible industry experience?


checkWe provide a powerful combination of industry- and company-level experience studies, predictive modeling, traditional analytical techniques, and expert judgment, based on seriatim monthly data since 2007, covering approximately 70% of the annuity industry.

Is your analytical framework robust as new data emerges?

checkWe work with you to customize and implement our behavioral analytics framework, with transparent linkage from experience data to assumption models, naturally suited to regular updates for inforce and new business.

Are your analytics granular enough to mitigate anti-selection and proactively manage changes in your business mix?

checkWe address the many factors of influence and their changes over time, including product and guarantee type, surrender charge period and duration, moneyness of guarantees on actuarial and nominal bases, contract size, tax status, age, gender, distribution channel and compensation structures, and income utilization and efficiency.

Is speed important to you?

checkIt is to us too. We provide the timely and immediately actionable results you need to efficiently manage your company’s behavioral risks.


We aim to be the platform and industry benchmark for principles-based insurance data analytics and risk management.


2017 VA and FIA Behavioral Modules

For each of: Options
VA Surrenders       VA Income Utilization       VA GMIB Annuitization       FIA Surrenders       FIA Income Utilization 1 2 3
Experience Studies – industry results in aggregate, along with your company results, in a detailed report with numerical exhibits covering key factors, cohorts, and dynamics
Customized assumption model – initially calibrated to industry results, and tailored to your company based on credibility techniques
Review of your current assumptions, and comparison to the customized model above
Benchmarking of your results relative to peers
Presentation and discussion with our team
Membership on our Behavioral Analytics Advisory Council




Would you like to learn more about implementation and pricing?


Timothy Paris

Behavioral Analytics for Annuities - Presentation slides from 2017 SOA Life & Annuity Symposium

Behavioral Analytics for Annuities - presentation slides from 2017 SOA Life & Annuity Symposium (session 82). Thanks to those attending...great interactive discussion.

Click here to open the slides

How well can you model GLWB behavior?

In collaboration with UCONN's Goldenson Center for Actuarial Research, we have developed a remarkable approach to modeling policyholder behavior for deferred annuities (particularly GLWB income utilization), with strong goodness of fit to historical data and high predictive power. All of this is fueled by industry-level data, and then tailored to each company using credibility procedures. Actuaries, A/E ratios in the 99-101% range?! Yes, it can be done. Hit us up.

Join us at the 2017 Retirement Industry Conference

Tim Paris will be moderating the session "Leadership Perspectives: Industry Benchmarking, Behavioral Analytics, and Executive Communication". Hope to see you there.


Podcast - Growing Your Company’s Predictive Analytics Capabilities.

Steve Wright and Tim Paris participated in this podcast of the Society of Actuaries' Predictive Analytics and Futurism section.

Predictive Analytics Case Study – Growing Your Company’s Capabilities

February 22, 2017

Length: 16:11

Sponsor: Predictive Analytics and Futurism Section

Description: Listen in as Shea Parkes, FSA, MAAA interviews Timothy Paris, FSA, MAAA and Steve Wright, FSA, MAAA from Ruark Consulting.  Tim and Steve have developed predictive analytics expertise at their company over the last few years.  They share stories from that journey and some suggested resources for others wanting to do the same.



Tim Paris sharing policyholder behavior insights in London


Non-traditional Life Insurance Products with Guarantees:From Variable Annuities to CPPI

8th - 9th March 2017, London

Tim Paris will be sharing policyholder behavior insights from the US market at the Non-traditional Life Insurance Products with Guarantees event next week in London.  http://www.training.risk.net/va/static/home

National Retirement Sustainability Index

Updated for 2015 data. Taking a broader perspective beyond our usual focus on policyholder behavior analytics, here is a great reminder from UCONN's Goldenson Center for Actuarial Research about why annuities and other retirement savings and income products are so important.


New book: Non-traditional Life Insurance Products with Guarantees

Ruark CEO Timothy Paris, contributed chapter 9 (modeling and managing policyholder behavior risks) to this new book. Even better, all royalties are pledged to UNICEF. If your company is a client of Ruark, we are glad to subsidize your purchase -- please contact us for a 35% discount code.

Great stocking stuffer for yourself or beloved actuaries and quants!


SOA Annual Meeting presentation slides are available for download

soa2016-annual-mtgSOA Annual Meeting presentation slides are available for download

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Tim Paris presented and was a moderator at the 2016 SOA Annual Meeting.  Included are links to the engaging sessions Tim participated in.


Session 40 Panel Discussion: How Would I Get Started With Predictive Modeling?

Competency: Technical Skills & Analytical Problem Solving
Moderator(s): Douglas T. Norris, FSA, MAAA
Presenter(s): Timothy S. Paris, FSA, MAAA; Sandra Tsui Shan To, FSA, MAAA; Qinqing (Annie) Xue, FSA, CERA, MAAA
View presentation pdf.


Session 97: Variable Annuity Guaranteed Living Benefit Utilization Studies and Benefit Utilization in Fixed Indexed Annuities.

Competency: External Forces & Industry Knowledge
Moderator(s): Patrick David Nolan, FSA, MAAA
Presenter(s): Jafor Iqbal; Joseph E. Montminy, ASA, MAAA; Timothy S. Paris, FSA, MAAA
View presentation pdf.


Session 83: Panel Discussion: Product Development Impact of the Department of Labor Fiduciary Rule

Competency: External Forces & Industry Knowledge
Moderator(s): Timothy S. Paris, FSA, MAAA
Presenter(s): Colin Devine, CFA, CFP, CMA; Daniel J. Rueschhoff, FSA, MAAA; Yuan Tao, FSA, MAAA
View presentation pdf.

Fixed Indexed Annuity Industry Mortality Study October 2016

Wednesday, October 12, 2016


Press Release

Fixed Indexed Annuity Industry Mortality Study
October 2016

Key Observations

  • 1st ever FIA industry mortality study. With the growth in the FIA market, particularly with GLWB features, Ruark has responded to the industry’s demand for what we believe to be the first FIA industry mortality study.
  • FIA mortality experience is different. Similar to what we have seen in our variable annuity industry mortality studies since 2007, standard annuity mortality tables offer a poor fit to observed FIA experience, tending to understate mortality rates at both ends of the age spectrum. FIA mortality also varies widely across the companies participating in the study.
  • FIA contracts with GLWB have approximately 20% lower mortality. This is an expected selection effect considering the longevity-based benefits provided by GLWBs.
  • Mortality also varies by duration, tax status, and contract size. FIA mortality increases gradually by contract duration, and is significantly lower for qualified contracts with and without GLWBs. However, significantly higher mortality is evident for large contracts.
  • Caution is warranted amidst a changing regulatory landscape. The potential implementation of the “fiduciary rule” may affect the mix of qualified and non-qualified FIA business, and agent and policyholder behavior more broadly. Prudence suggests careful monitoring of experience results and more granular assumption development.

Participating Companies

AIG Life & Retirement
American Equity
Midland National
Pacific Life
Security Benefit

Overview and Methodology

Ruark’s FIA and VA industry studies include policyholder behavior such as surrenders, income utilization, mortality, and annuitizations, which are vitally important to the long-term financial performance of these products. Through the experience study process and discussions with us, participating companies gain a detailed understanding of complex industry results and comparison to their own company results for benchmarking purposes. The 13 participating companies contributed 11 million contract years of data and 165,000 deaths for this study, covering the period January 2007 through September 2015.

About Us

Ruark Consulting has completed dozens of policyholder behavior experience studies for the annuity industry and individual companies since 2007, spanning surrenders, partial withdrawals and living benefit utilization, annuitization, and mortality. We are recognized leaders in annuity risk management, policyholder behavior analytics, and reinsurance brokerage and administration.


Timothy Paris | Chief Executive Officer | 860 866 7786 | timothyparis@ruark.co

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