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American Express Moves Up Bank Annuity Rankings; Firm Ranked 11th Largest Bank Annuity Writer in 2001.

Business Editors

MINNEAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 11, 2002

American Express Financial Group, through American Enterprise Life Insurance Company (AEL), has been recognized as the 11th largest overall bank annuity writer in 2001, up three places in rank from 2000, according to the year-end 2001 analysis published in The Kehrer Report.

American Express Financial Group saw overall bank annuity sales grow by 25% in 2001. Bank annuity sales accounted for 21% of total industry annuity premiums in the United States, according to the report. During a year when the overall industry dropped 29% for variable annuities, American Express registered 11% growth in variable annuity sales in 2001. American Express was one of only three carriers to see its variable annuity sales increase in 2001, which led to its year-to-year rank jumping six places to eighth largest variable annuity writer. The firm also saw fixed annuity sales jump 225% on the year, well ahead of the industry average of 58% growth in 2001. American Express moved from 17th to 15th in rank on fixed annuity sales.

"Our strategic partnership approach and our focus on expanding our distributor relationships have paid off in a big way for us in 2001," said Carol Holton, president of American Enterprise Life. "These results prove that we are delivering value to our institutional agents and their clients with our competitive products and improving the ease of doing business every day with us. We are attracting some of the largest annuity distributors in the business and are excited to see strong growth continuing in 2002."

The Kehrer Report (www.kenkehrer.com) is written by Kenneth Kehrer, a highly regarded New Jersey-based consultant. The publication reports on bank insurance and investment industry statistics on a quarterly and annual basis.

Based in Minneapolis, American Express Financial Group, American Enterprise Life Company (AEL) and its affiliate American Centurion Life Assurance Company (ACL) provide financial institution clients an array of products and services to support their retail annuity operations. AEL offers fixed and variable annuities and variable universal life insurance directly to financial institutions nationwide. ACL markets fixed and variable annuities in New York. Both are affiliated with American Express Financial Advisors Inc. (AEFA), which provides financial advisory services and investment programs for more than 2.3 million clients. AEFA, member NASD, is the principal underwriter of the variable products issued by AEL and ACL. AEL and ACL had $5.5 billion of assets at the end of 2001. Reserves for policyholder benefits and other liabilities totaled $5.2 billion. AEL and ACL are subsidiaries of IDS Life Insurance Company, which is a subsidiary of American Express Financial Corporation, a well-known and respected leader in financial services. American Express Financial Corporation has more than $253 billion in assets owned, managed or administered as of 12/31/01.

For more information about the American Express annuity products, including fees and expenses, call 1800-333-3437 or write to American Enterprise Life Insurance Company, 829 AXP Financial Center, Minneapolis MN 55474, for a prospectus. This material does not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy nor will there be any sales of annuities in any state in which such offer, solicitation or sales would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the applicable laws of any such state. Please call (800) 817-4647 for information on individual state approvals. American Express Company is separate from AEFA and is not an insurance company or a broker-dealer.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Apr 11, 2002
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