New York Life announces second largest dividend in company history with $1.8 billion total dividend payout to policy owners in 2021.

New York Life | November 19, 2020

New York Life’s commitment to financial strength, mutuality, and delivering long-term value to policy owners is reflected in the company paying a dividend for a 167th consecutive year.

New York - New York Life, America’s largest mutual life insurer1, today announced that the company has declared a dividend payout of $1.8 billion to eligible participating policyholders in 2021, the second largest in company history. The ability to pay a dividend in excess of the guarantees provided to policy owners on their cash value growth for a 167th consecutive year underscores New York Life’s focused business strategy, long-term investment approach, and enduring financial strength2.

New York Life Chairman and CEO Ted Mathas said: “Despite the headwinds posed by the global pandemic, historically low interest rates, and an economic downturn in 2020, New York Life maintains a position of incredible strength, benefiting from 175 years of experience navigating challenging financial and societal moments. As always, our unwavering focus remains on our core purpose – to be there when our policy owners need us most – and on providing financial security and peace of mind to millions of families and individuals for decades to come. While we could not have predicted the events of 2020, we are built for times like these, and our second largest dividend payout ever is a powerful testament to that fact.”

New York Life remains one of only two life insurance companies with the highest financial strength ratings currently awarded to any U.S. life insurer by all four major rating agencies3, out of 800 life insurers operating in the United States today. In addition, surplus and asset valuation reserve remains strong, bolstered by the company’s ability to strategically manage its $277.83 billion general account4.

New York Life’s foundational life insurance franchise is complemented by strategic businesses that deliver diversified revenue streams. These revenues contribute to surplus, dividends, and earnings and can help mitigate the impact of today’s historically low interest rate environment.

Based on the company’s unsurpassed financial strength and diversified business model, New York Life is uniquely positioned to deliver on its promises to policyholders.

“We are strategic and purposeful in how we adapt and evolve at New York Life, without losing sight of who we are and who we serve,” Mathas said. “This is demonstrated by our ongoing dedication to the power of human guidance delivered by New York Life’s industry leading agent force5 of over 12,000 financial professionals.”

New York Life will also pay dividends on participating Mutual Income Annuities for the fifth consecutive year6. Paying dividends delivers on the value proposition inherent in New York Life Mutual Income Annuities which combines guaranteed income with the potential for additional income through dividends. As income annuities have grown to become a core retirement solution for millions of Americans, New York Life and its subsidiaries remain a leading income annuity provider according to LIMRA7.

For the first time, New York Life will pay dividends on NYL My Care, a standalone long-term care product introduced in 2018. NYL My Care policy owners who have reached their third policy anniversary will receive a dividend in 20218.

For policy owners, the 2021 dividend payout confirms their decision to purchase participating life insurance from New York Life. Dividends can add value to a life insurance policy in several ways. As policy owners’ financial needs change over time, many use dividends to increase life insurance coverage without additional underwriting (known as Paid-Up Additions, or PUAs). By choosing PUAs, policy owners may purchase additional cash value and death benefit, and their money continues to grow income tax deferred. PUAs are also eligible to receive dividends. Dividends can also be used to pay a portion of premiums, thus lowering out-of-pocket costs; taken in the form of a check to be used any way a policy owner sees fit; or left on deposit with the company where dividend amounts can earn interest.

About New York Life

New York Life Insurance Company (, a Fortune 100 company founded in 1845, is the largest mutual life insurance company in the United States1 and one of the largest life insurers in the world. Headquartered in New York City, New York Life’s family of companies offers life insurance, retirement income, investments and long-term care insurance. New York Life has the highest financial strength ratings currently awarded to any U.S. life insurer from all four of the major credit rating agencies.3


1 Based on revenue as reported by “Fortune 500 ranked within Industries, Insurance: Life, Health (Mutual),” Fortune magazine, 5/18/2020. For methodology, please see

2 Dividends are not guaranteed.

3 Individual independent rating agency commentaries as of 10/15/2020: A.M. Best (A++), Fitch (AAA), Moody’s Investors Service (Aaa), Standard & Poor’s (AA+).

4 Surplus and general account as of 9/30/2020.

5 New York Life leads U.S. membership in the Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT), the Premier Association of Financial Professionals®.

6 Annuity premiums are invested in a portfolio that is separate and distinct from the life insurance portfolio and has its own dividend scale.

7 Source: LIMRA as of 12/31/2019.

8 The dividends paid on NYL My Care are payable as a premium offset, or if on claim, as an increase in the benefit pool.

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Media contact

Kevin Maher
New York Life Insurance Company
(212) 576-7937

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