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See the Governmental Accounting Standards Board.

General Account

The primary part of a life insurance company's balance sheet containing the assets, capital and surplus, and reserves for guaranteed liabilities.

General Account GIC

See traditional GIC.


See guaranteed investment contract.

Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB)

GASB is a private, not-for-profit, independent organization whose primary purpose is to develop generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) for local and state governments within the United States. The GASB is subject to oversight by the Financial Accounting Foundation (FAF), which selects the members of the GASB and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB). The GASB issued Statement No. 53. (See also book value accounting.)

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Group Annuity Contract

A contract issued by an insurance company that allows a tax-qualified plan to purchase retirement annuities for plan participants. Most guaranteed investment contracts are group annuity contracts.

Guaranteed Insurance Account (GIA)

See life insurance directly sold.

Guaranteed Investment Contract (GIC)

A stable value investment contracts (typically a group annuity contract) issued by an insurance company that pays a specified rate of return for a specific period of time, offers book value accounting, typically pays benefits to plan participants, and provides annuities upon request. These contracts are also known as guaranteed insurance contracts or guaranteed interest contracts and may be backed by either an issuer’s general account assets or separate account assets. In all cases, the insurance company owns the invested assets and the obligation to the contract-holder is backed by the full financial strength and credit of the issuer. A GIC that is held as an investment by a stable value investment option is typically known as a traditional GIC, while a GIC offered as the sole stable value investment option is more generally known as a guaranteed insurance account.