Annuities are long-term products designed for retirement. A fixed annuity is a contract between you and an insurance company that, in exchange for your premium (earning a fixed rate of interest), offers a stream of guaranteed income payments. Earnings are taxed as income upon withdrawal. Early withdrawals may be subject to withdrawal charges. Partial withdrawals may reduce benefits available under the contract as well as the amount available upon a full surrender. Withdrawals of taxable amounts are subject to ordinary income tax, and if taken prior to age 59½, an additional 10% federal tax may apply.