Banks recorded another great year in life insurance sales, according to Bank Insurance & Securities Research Associates, a bank brokerage industry group — great news considering the growing insurance gap.

In 2012, banks sold $1.6 billion in life insurance premium, the second highest annual production level in the history of the bank channel. The banks’ record year was 2010, when the channel sold $1.8 billion in life insurance.

Single premium life products dominated sales in 2012, accounting for $1.5 billion of new life insurance premium. First-year recurring premium products accounted for only $72 million. Single premium products have generated at least nine out of 10 dollars in new life sales premium in the bank channel since 2009, according to BISRA.

“While the life insurance sales results for 2012 are impressive, it’s discouraging to see the amount of recurring premium decline fairly steadily since the mid 2000’s,” says Scott Stathis, BISRA’s managing director. “We need to move beyond life insurance baby steps and get to real protection products. As banks evolve into providers of integrated wealth management we should see the amount of recurring premium increase.”

Margarida Correia is Associate Editor of Bank Investment Consultant, a SourceMedia publication.

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