Prudential Financial, Inc, or Pru, has been in the financial services and insurance business for almost 140 years. The company has been helping both individual and business clients to both grow and protect their wealth throughout that time. Pru is considered to be one of the largest financial services institutions in the world, with operations in the U.S., as well as in Europe, Asia, and Latin America.
The company has for many years had one of the most recognized brand symbols across the globe, as “The Rock” – its icon of strength, stability, expertise, and innovation – is known by both investors and non-investors worldwide, as is the company's long running corporate slogan, “Get a piece of the rock.”
Prudential Life Insurance Company
The Company and Its History
Prudential was founded in 1875 in Newark, New Jersey, by insurance agent John Fairfield Dryden. The company began in a basement office as “The Prudential Friendly Society.” The goal of Dryden was to make insurance coverage available to the working class people, and it sold primarily industrial insurance – a type of coverage that provides burial and funeral coverage for low income families. At that time, some of the policy premiums were as low as three cents per week.
Within just a few years, The Prudential Friendly Society expanded into Philadelphia and New York City, and its assets had reached $1 million. By 1885, the company had even sold its one millionth policy. That year, the company's name was also officially changed to The Prudential Insurance Company of America. It also adopted The Rock of Gibraltar as its company symbol.
Today, Prudential serves customers in 41 countries and territories, and it has roughly 47,000 employees around the world. The company holds approximately $1.176 trillion in assets under management.
Products Offered By Prudential
Prudential offers a variety of insurance and annuity products to both consumers and the business market. For consumers, the following insurance products can be found:
- Term Life Insurance – Term policies provide “temporary” protection for a set period of time, such as for 10 years, 15 years, 20 years, or 30 years. This type of coverage can be quite affordable – especially if the applicant is young and in good health at the time that he or she is applying for coverage. If you are not in the best health and you feel a policy for life insurance with no exam is the best way to go for you, we can help find the best carrier for your needs. This is because term life provides only pure death benefit protection, without any type of cash value or investment build up. Term life can be a good choice for those who are seeking to pay off the balance of a mortgage or other temporary needs, as well as for those who are looking for a large amount of death benefit protection but who do not have a large premium budget.
- Universal Life Insurance – Universal coverage provides both death benefit protection, as well as a cash value component. The cash value is allowed to grow on a tax deferred basis, meaning that no tax is due on the gain of the cash value until the time it is withdrawn. This means that the cash can essentially grow and compound exponentially over time. Universal life insurance offers policy holders a great deal of flexibility in that they can choose – within certain parameters – when they make their premium payment, as well as how much of that payment is allocated to the death benefit and how much of it is allocated to the cash value component.
- Variable Universal Life Insurance – Similar to regular universal life, variable universal policies provide a death benefit and a cash value component, along with tax deferred growth. However, the cash value component is tied to an underlying market performance. This provides the policy holder with the ability to grow their cash even more – provided that the market performs favorably. Conversely, these policies can also be more risky if the market has poor performance.
In addition to life insurance, Prudential provides fixed and variable annuities. These products can help those who are either already retired, or those who are approaching retirement, to meet various goals. For example, those who are saving for retirement can participate in tax deferred savings. Those who are seeking income can choose from a variety of different income options – including a lifetime option where they may receive income for the remainder of their life, regardless of how long that may be.
Prudential also offers additional types of insurance coverage products such as auto, home, RV, watercraft, and personal liability insurance, as well as retirement planning products and investment services to its customers in order to help them meet both their short- and long-term financial needs and goals.
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Additional services that are offered by the company include the firm's “Special Needs Solutions,” which address the unique concerns of parents who have children with special needs, as these families may require specialized life insurance and financial planning advice.
Financial Strength Ratings
Prudential holds strong ratings from the ratings agencies. These include the following:
|A.M. Best||Standard & Poor's||Moody's Investor Services||Fitch Ratings|
Advantages and Drawbacks
While Prudential is a strong contender in the insurance and financial services industry, the company has both advantages and drawbacks. With that in mind, it is important to consider all of these prior to moving forward with the purchase of a policy with the company in order to ensure that the policy that you choose meets all of your particular coverage needs and goals.
On the plus side, Prudential provides a nice selection of term and universal life insurance products. These particular plans all have strong features – and because they are backed by Prudential, policy holders can be assured that they have coverage that is backed by an extremely strong life insurer.
In addition to providing very good policy rates to those who are in good health, Prudential may also offer favorable rates to those who are tobacco chewers, as well as to those who are cigar users.
In addition to the product positives, Prudential also has high rankings for its customer service. Representatives can be reached in several ways, including via phone or through live website chat. Reps can also be reached through Twitter, Facebook, and Google+. This makes it extremely easy for policy holders who need answers to their questions, or even for those who are researching whether or not to purchase new or additional coverage. Additional information can be found on Prudential's customer service FAQ page on the company's main website.
Unfortunately, even with all of the good, there are a few drawbacks with Pru. First, those who are seeking whole life coverage are out of luck, as the company does not offer this type of policy. So, while universal life policies provide individuals with flexibility, not offering whole life to those seeking guarantees leaves out a potentially huge area of the market place.
In addition, those who may have adverse health conditions could have a difficult time finding coverage directly from Prudential's online quote page. Therefore, in these instances, it is likely best to work with an agency or company that specializes more in higher risk cases and who can provide more of a comparison shopping experience.
Annuities Offered by Prudential
Another product that is offered by Prudential is their retirement investments. One way that they do that is through annuities. Annuities are contracts that you hold with an insurance company (in this case, Prudential), and it’s a safe way to invest your money. Annuities are one of the most popular investments for people as they start planning for their retirement. The money is invested in a professionally managed portfolio, where it grows money tax-deferred. Once you retire, you can start receiving a paycheck to fund your retirement dreams.
If you’re going to purchase an annuity from Prudential, then you’ll be buying a variable annuity. Unlike a fixed annuity, the variable annuity could fluctuate depending on the investments inside of the annuity.
When you want to access your money, there are some restrictions on getting your hands on your investment money. If you want to start making withdrawals before you are 59 and ½, then you’re going to be subject to an additional 10% federal income penalty on top of the income taxes that you’ll already be paying.
How and Where to Buy the Best Life Insurance Coverage
To get the very best life insurance for your specific needs and goals – regardless of your particular health condition at the time of application – it is always a good idea to first make comparisons.
Just like the purchase of any other key product or service, you will want to make sure that you are obtaining the very best deal possible. This is a product that you are purchasing to protect the people who are most important in your life. With that in mind, you should expect it to be the very best – and that it be there for the long haul.
If you are ready to begin making life insurance policy and premium quote comparisons, my preferred partner is here to help. They work with many of the best life insurance companies in the industry today – and can help to provide you with all of the information that you need. They are also available to answer any of the additional questions or concerns that you may have.
When you're ready to begin the process of locating the life insurance policy and premium that is best for you and those you love, use the form on the side of this page to run your own quotes and work with our preferred life insurance partner.
I understand that purchasing any type of insurance, such as life or health insurance, is a big decision, and we want to ensure that you have all of the information that you need before moving forward. So, feel free to contact us now – we are here to help.