How to tell the whole truth about Direct Recognition.

There are two different methods insurance companies use to handle the loaned cash value — direct recognition and non-direct recognition. In a non-direct recognition company, the earnings rate on cash value is totally unaffected by any loans against cash value. In a direct recognition company, the earnings rates on loaned cash value are affected both positively and negatively when the cash value is used as collateral.

Generally, the loaned cash value has a dividend rate that is a certain number of basis points lower than the interest charged on the loan. So if the current-dividend-crediting rate is less than the direct-recognition-crediting rate, then the cash value is affected positively. If the current-dividend-crediting rate is greater than the direct-recognition-crediting rate, then cash value is affected negatively.

For example, let’s say the current-dividend-crediting rate is 6.5 percent, and the loan rate is 8 percent with all loaned cash value getting a “100 basis point” (1 percent) reduction from the loan rate (bringing it down to 7 percent). That being the case, since 7 percent is obviously greater than 6.5 percent, borrowing against your cash value actually improves your situation because your dividend-crediting rate will be at 7 percent for the borrowed cash value and 6.5 percent for the non-borrowed cash value.

After all the analysis we’ve done on many companies and policies, we’ve found either way works just fine. Maybe consider having both!