Platinum, which has swept the credit card industry, is now finding its way into insurance.

Massachusetts Financial Services, Boston, announced that it is upgrading its MFS Regatta Gold fixed-variable annuity. In states where it's approved to be sold - 21 so far - it will now be known as MFS Regatta Platinum.

The new moniker reflects its improved features, said Lisa M. Jones, senior vice president and director of the financial institutions division of Massachusetts Financial Services.

Upon death, the platinum product will now pay the highest amount the contract achieved at any anniversary of purchase, minus payouts. Eight investment options were added, along with three asset allocation programs that are automatically rebalanced every quarter.

The product now offers 25 variable and 10 fixed account options. All are managed by Massachusetts Financial Services' parent company, Sun Life of Canada.

"We really went out to see what was in the marketplace that we could do better," Ms. Jones said.

The maximum anniversary value death benefit exists in only a few other annuity products, she said. With baby boomers aging, Massachusetts Financial Services said it is important to focus on features supporting estate and long-term planning, Ms. Jones said.

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