Agree, I am referring here to the coupon strategy only and disregarding the floor and buffer strategies (the downside protection only applies after 6 years point to point and the SP500 has rarely been down after 6 years, let alone more than 10% (floor strategy)). I would disregard those strategies entirely. The fixed interest rate is also not competitive so I'd disregard that one as well. The only one that seems attractive is the coupon strategy.nisiprius wrote: ↑Fri Aug 18, 2023 3:38 pmYes and no. The language doesn't seem obfuscated. However, it doesn't help that they are describing four different products at the same time, possibly because you are apparently allowed to mix and match different combinations of the four within the same account. There is a fixed interest strategy and three indexed strategies, two based on price return, one on total return, two with 72-month terms, one with a three-month return.

And the description of how the payoff is calculated on pp. 30 to 38, and thirteen different tables, may not be any more complicated than necessary, but that's pretty complicated.

In fact, while I know the SP500 has been slightly negative I think once or twice over a 10 year period (most recently 1999 to 2009), I don't know if it has ever been negative over a 6 year period--perhaps the great depression. Even then, I don't know if these negative periods factored in dividends, or whether this only considered the Price Return Index. Therefore, giving up dividends for the very remote possibility of partial downside protection is a sucker's bet.

The major caveat to the coupon strategy is that Gainbridge can cut the coupon rate at any time and the 0.25% bonus only applies for the three month period. Still, the coupon can't drop below 0.20%, so at best you get the Total Return Index plus 1% annually, and at worst you get the Total Return Index + 0.2%.

The only guarantee is that the coupon rate will not be less than 0.2%-in other words it could be 0.2%. In that case, you're locking up your money for 7 years with very little upside (beyond any tax deferral advantages by virtue of holding the SP500 in an annuity, but given that gains will be taxed as ordinary income when withdrawn, and the lack of step up in basis at death, this isn't an advantage at all for the vast majority of folks). And, potentially the downside of losing your investment (minus any eventual bankruptcy recovery or state guarantee association recovery) for only a 0.2% upside over investing directly in VOO.