AMERITAS DIRECT ROLLS OUT NO-LOAD ANNUITY: Ameritas Life Insurance Corp. has unveiled its Genesis No-Load Variable Annuity, distributed via its Ameritas Direct unit, which markets the No-Load series of insurance and annuity products to self-directed consumers.Ameritas Direct designed the Genesis Variable Annuity, which features no commission, no sales charge, no withdrawal charge and no policy fee. (Gains are taxed as ordinary income and additional penalties may apply to withdrawals made prior to age 59-1/2.)

Ameritas Direct said that it raised the maximum premium (without prior approval) on the Genesis No-Load Variable Annuity from $1 million to $5 million for all new accounts.

In related news, Ameritas Direct recently added two new investment options, ProFunds Dow 30 and ProFunds Short Dow 30. Investors now have access to 22 ProFunds sub-account variable portfolios, which consist of investment options provided by ProFund Advisors LLC.

RSM MCGLADREY TOP RANKED RETIREMENT PLAN PROVIDER IN SMALL MARKET: The Retirement Resources unit of national CPA and business advisory firm RSM McGladrey garnered the No. 1 ranking in a recent consumer satisfaction survey among retirement plan providers serving the $1 million to $10 million market.

Ranked in the top slot by benefit plan consultancy 401kExchange, RSM McGladrey Retirement Resources offers defined-contribution, defined-benefit and employee stock ownership plan administration, as well as stand-alone consulting and fiduciary reviews.

ADVICEAMERICA UNVEILS BABY BOOMER SOFTWARE: AdviceAmerica Inc., a provider of financial planning software, rolled out a retirement income planning and distribution solution that addresses the challenges that Baby Boomers face when entering retirement - managing post-retirement risks and inadequate retirement income.

The AdvisorVision Retirement Income Edition, a Web-based application, allows advisors to create customized plans in as little as 15 minutes, and evaluate a range of scenarios that consider changes in virtually every aspect of a retiree's life, including savings and cash flow, expenses, income, market performance, withdrawal strategy, annuities, residence downsizing, and long-term care and life insurance.

NAPFA ELECTS 2006-07 BOARD: The National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, a trade group of fee-only financial planners, has elected its National Board for 2006-07.

The 2006-07 members of the National Board are:

* Chairman - Richard L. Bellmer, Indianapolis;

* Chief executive - Ellen M. Turf, Arlington Heights, Ill.;

* Treasurer - Thomas A. Orecchio, Old Tappan, N.J.;

* Secretary/membership - Bernard M. Kiely, Morristown, N.J.;

* President's council - Marjorie L. Fox, McLean, Va.;

* Conference liaison - William T. Baldwin, Waltham, Mass.;

* Education - Linda N. Patchett, Chapel Hill, N.C.;

* Consumer representative - Irene Leech, Blacksburg, Va.;

* Industry issues - Diahann Lassus, New Providence, N.J.;

* NAPFA consumer education foundation liaison - James E. Pearman Jr., Roanoke, Va.;

* Midwest chair - Christopher Long, Chicago;

* Northeast/Mid-Atlantic chair - Kenneth E. Diehl, Gaithersburg, Md.;

* South chair - W. Eric Hehman, Austin, Texas; and,

* West chair - Cindi R. Hill, San Diego.

MORNINGSTAR ROLLS OUT 529 TOOL: Financial services conglomerate Morningstar has developed a Web-based tool to aid advisors in compiling reports that inform investors about the various fees and state tax benefits relating to 529 college savings plans.

Morningstar said that the launch of its 529 Suitability Manager is in response to the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board rule interpretation that recently went into effect, requiring brokers, dealers and municipal securities dealers to disclose the state tax benefits that would not be available to the investor as a result of investing in an out-of-state 529 plan. It allows advisors to choose the most suitable plan for the investor.

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