Sales of annuities at banks are up modestly from last year.

During the first quarter of 2013, banks generated $790.7 million in annuity sales, up 1.2% from $781.7 million in the same quarter last year, according to the Michael White Bank Annuity Fee Income Report.

The largest bank holding companies—those with more than $10 billion in assets—accounted for the bulk of the sales, raking in $735.1 million, or 93% of the industry total. Bank holding companies with between $1 billion and $10 billion in assets generated $47.8 million, while those with between $500 million and $1 billion in assets generated $7.7 million.

A total of 417 bank holding companies reported annuity fee income in the first quarter. Of those, 209 were on track to earn at least $250,000 this year. Of the 209, about half or 105 achieved double-digit growth in annuity fee income for the quarter, according to the report.

“Those findings are considerably better than first-quarter 2012, but not quite as high as first-quarter 2011 when 116 institutions or 63.4% of 183 of those on track to earn at least $250,000 in annuity fee income achieved double-digit growth,” Michael White, president of Michael White Associates, a consulting and research firm based in Radnor, Pa., said in a statement.

Wells Fargo & Co. was the top producer of annuity fee income in the first quarter, generating $194 million. Morgan Stanley ranked second, with $157 million in annuity sales, followed by Raymond James Financial, which pulled in $81 million.

The report is based on data from 7,019 commercial banks, savings banks and savings associations, and 1,084 large top-tier bank and thrift holding companies with consolidated assets greater than $500 million operating on March 31, 2013. 

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