Persistently low interest rates continue to depress life insurers' assets and investments, according to "Life Insurance Industry Investments: Under Pressure in 2011," a study from Conning, the global insurance industry investment management company.

"While most of the negative impacts of the financial crisis faded in 2011, the continued policy of low interest rates from the Federal Reserve took its toll on fixed income yield, and is now being recognized and responded to as a longer-term challenge," said Mary Pat Campbell, analyst at Conning.

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