U.S. insurers and other financial-industry players scored a victory this week as a year-end spending deal includes a retirement bill that they’ve pushed in Congress.
The bill, known as the SECURE Act, aims to boost the use of annuities, improve the retirement plans offered by small employers and deliver other changes to the U.S. retirement system.
Critics of the measure have stressed that it benefits insurance companies, which sold more than $230 billion worth of annuities in 2018 would like to sell more.
Insurers engaged in significant lobbying this year on the SECURE Act, and they praised Congress on this week’s development.
“The SECURE Act makes important changes that will go a long way toward addressing the nation’s looming retirement crisis,” said a statement from the American Council of Life Insurers, a trade group whose members include companies such as Prudential Financial PRU, +0.46% and MetLife MET, +0.59% .
“One provision alone will get more than 700,000 small business employees nationwide to start saving for retirement. Another will make it easier for employers to offer retirement plans with lifetime income options through annuities.”
The SECURE Act’s full name is the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act.