Federated Hires Prudential Fund Executive

Federated Investors of Pittsburgh said Tuesday that it has hired a fund executive from Prudential Investments, in a continuing effort to build up its international investment management unit.Stephen F. Auth, 43, was named senior vice president and director of global portfolio management, a newly created position. His duties include helping develop the firm's international investment strategy.

Federated managed about $125 billion of assets on Dec. 31, including $4.6 billion of international and global funds, a spokesman said.

- Cheryl Winokur

Bank One Variable Universal Life Policy

Bank One Corp. is offering a variable universal life insurance policy that gives customers investment growth opportunities and tax advantages.The One VUL Solution will be available through the Chicago company's Banc One Insurance Group. American General Life and Accident Insurance Co., a subsidiary of Houston's American General Corp., will issue and underwrite the policies.

The product lets customers select from 18 investment trust portfolios, including stock and bond portfolios and money market funds. It includes benefits typically associated with life insurance, such as federal income tax-free death benefits, family financial protection, and probate-free transfers.

Equitable Unit Appoints Chief Executive

Equitable Distributors Inc., the third-party distribution arm of Equitable Life Assurance Society of the U.S., has named Patrick Miller chief executive officer.Mr. Miller, 36, was president of Equitable Distributors' wirehouse channel. He assumed his new responsibilities March 30.

He succeeded co-chief executives Jamie Shepherdson and Greg Brakovich, who both left the company March 31 to pursue other interests, a spokeswoman said.

Equitable Distributors sells variable annuities and life insurance through broker-dealers and other financial institutions, including banks.

The unit also named Alex MacGillivray president and Charles Wilder chief operating officer as of March 30. The creation of that job reflects growth in Equitable's third-party distribution, the spokeswoman said.

Outside distribution accounted for 32% of Equitable Life's annuity sales last year, which totaled $7 billion, the spokeswoman said. Sales of annuities through the third-party channel were $2.3 billion, up from $1.7 billion in 1998.

Equitable, based in New York, is a subsidiary of Axa Group, which has about $790 billion of assets under management.

- Amy L. Anderson

Essex Targets Annuity to Baby Boomers

Essex Corp., a New York wholesaler of annuities, mutual funds, and life insurance, is marketing a fixed annuity with health-care benefits that targets baby boomers.The ClassicCare Annuity, underwritten by AIG Life Insurance Co. of Wilmington, Del., has a supplemental rider that pays for up to four years of home health care and nursing home costs. Nursing home benefits equal 5% of the annuity's accrued value; home benefits equal 1%. Benefits begin after five years.

Kevin E. Crowe, chairman and chief executive officer of Essex, said the annuity is unique in allowing individuals to purchase the annuity for their parents, then transfer unused benefits to a new ClassicCare annuity. That way, baby boomers can provide for aging parents and themselves, he said.

Essex has a number of contracts in the works and expects to begin selling the annuity by May 1, Mr. Crowe said.

Essex, a subsidiary of Boston-based John Hancock Life Insurance Co., had $2.2 billion in annuity sales in 1999.

- Amy L. Anderson

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