Conseco has made management changes and put the brakes on its individual annuity and life insurance lines. Liz Georgakopoulos, once president of the insurance unit, is no longer with the company, and three senior members of her team have also left. Bill Shea, CEO, has assumed the role of president of the insurance group.

"He has created a six-point plan for strengthening the Conseco insurance group of companies," a company spokeswoman said, adding the Conseco has no plans to replace Georgakopoulos.

Conseco has limited its fixed and equity-index annuity line so the company can commit its resources to supplemental life insurance.

Financial troubles at Conseco have eroded the company’s financial strength ratings and consequently affected its ability to compete in the annuity market.

"Ratings have the most impact on our annuity and interest-sensitive life insurance products," the company said in its 10-K annual report filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Conseco will more aggressively reenter the market depending on several factors, including improvements in the equities market. Also, the company expressed concern over trends in the tax treatment of annuities and life insurance and increasing competition in the10-K report.

Last year, $220.1 million of equity-index annuity sales accounted for 5% of total premiums collected. Conseco collected $872.7 million from sales of its traditional fixed annuities, which accounted for 18% of total premiums collected. The remaining sales came from immediate annuities and more than three-quarters of annuity sales in 2002 came from bonus products. Conseco collected $1,092.8 billion in total annuity premium in 2000.

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