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What Is An Annuity, And Why Do They Matter?

An annuity is generally a fixed sum of money paid to someone each year, often defined as payable for the rest of their life. These have typically been purchased from insurance companies upon retirement. A typical annuity quote would be something like, in exchange for every £15 (~US$20.34) of up front cost, I will pay you £1 (~US$1.36) of income each year. These are an important part of the pensions landscape. This is particularly true for personal pensions or defined contribution pensions’, which now make up the majority of pension arrangements in the U.K., where individuals have their own distinct pension “pot” or allocation.

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