Despite a significant decline in sales in the past years, advisors and industry executives remain upbeat about annuities because the products are expected to protect principal and provide retirement income.

According to a survey conducted in the first quarter by the Insured Retirement Institute released Monday the overall outlook for the annuity industry is positive. While some challenges remain, respondents indicated the growth industry’s opportunities are strong, with growth for variable annuities ranking 4.1 on a five-point scale, and fixed ranking 3.2 on the same scale.

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