Why do Fools fall in love?
It seems like TheMotleyFool is so in love with variable products that they can't use common sense when it comes to fixed annuities. Just like most securities based news organizations, they have no problem trying to explain options, derivatives, and a myriad of other highly complex investment strategies, but when it comes to annuities their brain can't handle "complexity".
Let me make it simple for you Fools. Money in a fixed annuity, of any type, goes up, not down, as long as you use it as it is intended to be used. If you withdraw more than your penalty free amount there are surrender charges (just like some mutual funds you love to talk about).
Complex riders, really? Compared to what? The talking points of securities based news organizations is just getting boring.