New York Life Insurance Company

On the 2023 Fortune 500 list of the biggest U.S. corporations by total revenue, New York Life Insurance Company (NYLIC), the largest mutual life insurance company and the third-largest life insurance company in the country, is ranked #71.Standard & Poor’s, AM Best, Moody’s, and Fitch Ratings, the four independent rating agencies, awarded NYLIC the highest possible ratings in 2023. Institutional and retail mutual funds, as well as a variety of securities products and services, are offered by other New York Life affiliates.


Ten years after the first life insurance charter was issued in the United States, in 1841, New York Life Insurance Company made its debut as Nautilus Mutual Life in Manhattan’s Financial District. The company was founded in 1841 and offered marine and fire insurance. James De Peyster Ogden was named as the company’s first president in 1845. In 1845, Nautilus changed its name to New York Life Insurance Company in order to focus on its life insurance division. During its early years (1846–1848), the corporation guaranteed the lives of slaves for their owners, as did other insurance companies of the time such as US Life and Aetna. These made up one-third of New York Life’s insurance by 1847. In 1848, the board of trustees decided to stop selling insurance coverage pertaining to slaves. In addition, the business settled claims under a flag of truce during the American Civil War and marketed policies to troops and citizens fighting in the conflict. The company started hiring female agents in the late 1800s. Over the course of its first 100 years, New York Life expanded along with the country’s population and the life insurance industry. The implementation of a method via which the corporation hired agents to find new business contributed to New York Life’s growth. John A. McCall, the president of the corporation, established the branch office structure in 1892. These offices functioned as intermediaries between field agents and New York. Social reformer Susan B. Anthony was among the company’s first female clients when it launched its life insurance business in 1894, making it the first in the US to do so. The first company to insure individuals with disabilities or those working in dangerous occupations was New York Life, founded in 1896.

Century 20

American architect Cass Gilbert created the New York Life Building, which is located at 51 Madison Avenue in Manhattan. It opened for business in December 1928. In 1929, the corporation moved into a 34-story building. New York Life’s assets withstood the stock market fall later that year because the company’s investment philosophy and state regulations had directed it to buy real estate and government bonds rather than ordinary stocks. New York Life expanded its portfolio after World War II, making real estate development investments in the late 1940s and introducing a mortgage-loan program for veterans in 1946. Cirilo McSween, one of the first black agents in the business, was employed by New York Life in 1957. New York Life started offering mutual funds and annuities for sale in the 1970s. While other mutual life insurance firms went public in the late 1990s and early 2000s, New York Life stayed a mutual company. 1999 saw the entry of New York Life into the Mexican market when it purchased Seguros Monterrey from Aetna.

Recent history

Following the September 11 attacks, New York Life and other insurance companies loosened the requirements for filing claims for missing persons.In the two years before the 2007–2008 financial crisis, New York Life shifted its funds into other investments including treasury bonds out of concern for the stability of the market. New York Life Insurance Company turned down aid from the US Treasury Department during the subsequent financial crisis. After purchasing Dexia Asset Management in 2013, which was then renamed Candriam Investors Group, New York Life Investments grew to become one of the biggest asset managers globally, with access to markets not only in the US but also in Europe, Asia, and Australia. The business declared in November 2021 that CEO Ted Mathas would be replaced by company president Craig DeSanto. After the changeover was completed in April 2022, Mathas remained a non-executive chairman of the firm.


The third-biggest life insurance provider in the US as of 2016 was New York Life Insurance Company. New York Life is a mutual insurance business with no outside stockholders; it is owned by its policyholders. As a mutual, New York Life pays yearly dividends to qualified policyholders from a percentage of its earnings. The business has distributed a dividend annually since 1854 as of 2016.For insurance in Mexico, the corporation uses Seguros Monterrey New York Life. Whole life insurance, a kind of life insurance that provides lifetime protection and gradually increases in cash value, is the main offering of New York Life. In addition, New York Life offers long-term care insurance, annuities, disability insurance, universal life insurance, and variable universal life insurance. The company is the sole life insurance partner of AARP and runs New York Life Direct, which offers direct-to-consumer coverage.

Asset management companies

A subsidiary worldwide asset management company that caters to institutional as well as retail clients is New York Life Investments. In terms of all institutional assets under management globally, it is ranked No. 26 by Pensions & Investments’ Largest Money Managers Survey 2017.

The group uses independent investment shops to manage its funds. Among these boutiques are:

  1. Ausbil is an Australian boutique investing firm with focus on stocks.
  2. The Candriam Investors Group is a firm that specializes in asset allocation strategies,emerging debt,high yield,absolute return,and sustainable investing.
  3. Credit Value Partners is an expert in high,yield corporate credit and opportunistic,distressed financing.
  4. GoldPoint Partners is a private equity business that focuses on alternative investment methods and exchange-traded funds, according to IndexIQ.
  5. MacKay Shields is an asset management company that provides capital growth through mutual funds and hedge funds, with an emphasis on income production.
  6. Private equity firms can receive funding from Madison Capital Funding.
  7. Asset manager Private Advisors, with a focus on hedge funds and private equity firms

Giving initiatives

The charitable division of the insurance firm is called New York Life Foundation. Among its topics of interest is grieving in infancy. In 2007, the New York Life Foundation began its involvement in childhood bereavement programs by providing funding for the Comfort Zone Camp. A few of its initiatives and partners are the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, Camp Erin/Moyer Foundation, Grief Reach, Coalition to Support Grieving Students, National Alliance of Grieving Children, and Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors.] The HBO documentary One Last Hug was sponsored by it.

Additionally, the business places a strong emphasis on giving back to other cultural groups, such as the African-American community. Additionally, in 2006, the firm contributed $10 million to establish the New York Life Endowment for Emerging African-American Issues, which was housed at the City College of New York’s Colin Powell Center for Policy Studies.

Rankings and ratings

Within the life insurance sector, Fortune listed New York Life as one of its Most Admired Companies in 2017.New York Life was placed #364 by Forbes in their 2017 list of America’s Best Employers.New York Life is ranked 71st on the Fortune 500 as of 2023. New York Life held the top financial strength ratings by the end of 2023 from all four major rating agencies: AA+ from Standard & Poor’s, AAA from Fitch Ratings, Aaa from Moody’s, and A++ from A.M. Best.


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