WARNING to White South Africans looking for Pension Income: An Annuity is the worst investment EVER!


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[What I am writing below is aimed directly at White South Africans. However, given that the world is pretty similar this might apply to Whites in other countries. Jan]

I’ve had to sort out my own pension especially in the last 20 years as I’ve now reached retirement age. While doing so, among the investments I used and bought into was an Annuity. An annuity allows you to draw a steady income when you retire.

Recently, I’ve been moving my pension which includes my annuity, to another company. While doing this I’ve been engaging in detailed discussions with the White guys doing this. I then wanted an excel spreadsheet so I could analyse things and compare investments.

While doing this we were looking at several variations on the annuity scheme, while comparing it to other investments. I spent time analysing the returns and looking closely at the different options. I began to get suspicious about the amount of money in my annuity versus the returns from it, and I looked closely at it.

After doing all the Math, I came to a horrific conclusion. That an annuity is the WORST FORM OF INVESTMENT I HAVE EVER SEEN. I’ve never seen anything as bad as an annuity. It also depends on the TYPE of annuity.

I looked at the calculations for 3 types of annuity.

1. A flat rate which gives you the same income from now until the end. The benefit is a higher income NOW. I calculated it’s actual return and it’s return was 4.2% – That is the most rotten return I’ve ever seen on an investment. Anyone who chooses this will be throwing his money away.

2. A 5% increase annually. When I calculated the actual growth rate for this I got 5.6% growth – which was ok. It matched and was even slightly better than predicted.

3. An annuity with 10% increase annually. I calculated its growth and got 6.4%. So its returns were lower than the 10% annual increase. However, despite it not matching what it was supposed to do, it did actually outperform all the other options.

So my conclusion:

Compared to any other investment, including Growth Funds, Income Funds, etc – an annuity SUCKS. It’s the worst performing investment of all. Its only value is that it gives you a FIXED, STABLE, STEADY, RELIABLE income. But it is the WORST income you could ever get – especially when done over 10 or 20 years. Over the long term (5-10 years), it’s better to take riskier investments that perform better.

Of the annuities, the worst idea on earth is an annuity that gives a big income NOW and has zero growth. The only time you take that is if you think you’re going to DIE SOON! But if your health is good or you are younger – this is the worst idea ever conceived.

Of the annuities, the best one was the 10% growth rate. That is the best hedge against the future including inflation.

For me, a thing I was thinking about is this: As you get older you get more ill and you need more cash. You run into more problems and you need more money. So one must think about the fact that you will be needing money then.

If you Live in Europe where you get health care, that’s a whole different thing. But in South Africa where we have zero health care, and we must look after ourselves all the way, we need to be careful.

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