Wealth Beyond Wall Street: Retirement Planning Solution or Scam?

Have you been hearing radio and other ads for something called Wealth Beyond Wall Street offering a free book if you call a toll-free number?

The promise sounds enticing: Use an index strategy to share in the upside of the stock market with no downside risk. You may also hear that this is the same strategy used by Walt Disney and JC Penney.  If you’re wondering what it’s all about, I’m going to spill the beans in this review, including the ACTUAL strategy Walt Disney and JC Penney used…

Wealth Beyond Wall Street book cover
Wealth Beyond Wall Street book by Brett Kitchen and Ethan Kap

Wealth Beyond Wall Street is the brain child of marketer Brett Kitchen, and Ethan Kap, a financial representative. They typically appear together in pictures dressed in black suits and black sunglasses, standing next to a classic Mustang. (Reminds me of the Blues Brothers every time I see it.)

Wealth Beyond Wall Street book cover

Wealth Beyond Wall Street book by Brett Kitchen and Ethan Kap

Before Wealth Beyond Wall Street, they called it Safe Money Millionaire and the 101 Plan.

When you call their toll-free number to take advantage of their free book offer, you’ll also be offered a free consultation or “blueprint” from one of their financial representatives.

It turns out the product they use to participate in the upside of the market, with no downside risk, is Indexed Universal Life or IUL. And they will try to convince you it’s the best financial vehicle ever invented.

Yet IUL may actually be the worst financial vehicle ever invented… and this review will prove it. I’ve spent literally hundreds of hours investigating Indexed Universal Life, which resulted in this definitive IUL exposé and video I published.

Here Are the Most Important Things You Need to Know About Indexed Universal Life:

  • New York State’s top financial watchdog launched an investigation into the sales practices used by both insurance companies and financial representatives who promote IUL policies, because they were “deeply concerned” that the illustrations consumers were shown were “wildly inaccurate.”
  • As a result, state insurance regulators recently adopted new guidelines for marketing materials that limit the investment gain that can be used to illustrate a policy’s performance. However, “IUL takes illustration abuse to new and unnecessary heights,” in spite of attempts to regulate it, according to an article on risk management from the Society of Financial Services Professionals.
  • The fact of the matter is that an Indexed Universal Life policy can indeed lose value in years when the market goes down or sideways. And it can even lose value in the years when the market goes up by just a little.

    But I have yet to meet a financial representative selling this garbage who will warn you about this.

  • In recent months, several insurers have notified tens of thousands of policy owners that they are exercising their rights to raise costs – a LOT.

    When that happens, your premiums go up – a LOT! These premium increases policy owners are being notified of are truly shocking – ranging from about 40% to over 200%!

  • For example, one 76-year-old man’s Indexed Universal Life premium leaped 81% on a policy he purchased only seven years earlier. Can you imagine the shock of getting a notice in the mail telling you your premium just jumped by so much, you can’t afford to fund it any more and will be forced to let it lapse?

The Life Insurance Policy With the Most Guarantees

NOTE: There is only one type of life insurance that guarantees your premiums will never increase, your costs will never increase and your cash value will grow by a preset and guaranteed amount every single year – no matter what’s happening in the stock market.

Get all the details when you download our FREE Special Report here.
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Here Are Four More Downsides of Indexed Universal Life that Wealth Beyond Wall Street is NOT Warning You About:

  • Although some policies offer an interest rate guarantee of 1%, 2% or 3% per year to offset years where the market goes down or is flat, most do NOT actually credit you that interest every year. They may do it every five or ten years or, very commonly, only when the policy is terminated! (It makes the illustration look good, but it’s pure fiction.)
  • It is entirely possible that you could pay premiums every year and end up with NO cash value and NO death benefit, if the stock market indexes used don’t perform as projected.
  • The companies offering these policies can change how much of the market’s increase you’ll be allowed to share in, at their discretion.
  • While some policies offer a guarantee that your policy won’t lapse, if you have that guarantee, it simply means you’ll have a death benefit. But it doesn’t guarantee you’ll have any cash value. And with no cash value to fall back on, you’ll have to continue to pay premiums out of your pocket to keep the death benefit in force.
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If you request a full illustration for an Indexed Universal Life policy (rather than the rosy-projections-only portion you’ll often be shown), two scary things should become apparent to you:

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  1. There are numerous warnings and disclaimers throughout. In a typical IUL illustration from one of the biggest companies selling the product, we found no less than 65 warnings and disclaimers!
  2. In a full illustration, you will see several scenarios which will show your cash value has gone to zero – literally disappearing.

    Don’t be fooled by a smooth-talking Wealth Beyond Wall Street investment advisor – the illustration shows your cash value going to zero because it absolutely CAN happen.

Do You Really Need Another Hope-and-Pray Strategy in Your Financial Plan?

The bottom line is that no other life insurance product comes with as many guarantees as dividend-paying whole life. And there are little-known riders or options available that make your cash value grow significantly faster, while paying the agent 50-70% less commission. Download our FREE Special Report, 5 Simple Steps to Bypass Wall Street, Fire Your Banker, and Take Control of Your Financial Future here to get all the details.

Brett Kitchen and Ethan Kap used to promote dividend-paying whole life insurance… before they went over to the dark side and started selling Indexed Universal Life branded as “Wealth Beyond Wall Street.” It’s a switch more than a few financial representatives have made, because it’s an easier, sexier and more profitable product to sell.

[And for the record, the claim by Wealth Beyond Wall Street that this is the same strategy used by Walt Disney and JC Penney is false. Indexed Universal Life didn’t even exist until recently. It was dividend-paying whole life that was used by Disney, JC Penney and other famous people.]

I can assure you that if Indexed Universal Life lived up to the hype, that’s the product I would own and would be writing about.

Buyer Beware – Don’t Be Fooled – There IS A Safe, Guaranteed Wealth-Building Solution

At Bank On Yourself, we know there’s no reason whatsoever for you to have to take unnecessary risks with your money. If you want a financial future based on guarantees, rather than hope and prayers and keeping your fingers crossed, you’ll want to talk with a Bank On Yourself Professional to find out what your bottom-line guaranteed numbers and results would be.

Request a free, no-obligation analysis and receive a referral to a Professional who is specially trained in designing the supercharged dividend-paying whole life insurance policies Bank On Yourself relies on.



  1. I read the free book wealth beyond wall street but they refused to help me when I told them that I only have $1,000 to invest. They did not want to talk to me any more. They help only those that have money instead of help those that are looking for a solution.

    • Unfortunately, we wouldn’t have been able to help you much at Bank On Yourself either. And certainly not because we’re greedy or don’t want to help those who are looking for a solution. We do that all day long, every day.

      It has more to do with the efficiency of these policies. Typically, you will either fund them monthly, quarterly or annually for some period of time, and policies funded with less that $300/month will not grow as efficiently.

      In other situations, a lump sum payment is involved, and the companies often won’t issue a policy for less than $50,000, as there are upfront costs to issue a policy that they must cover. In addition, a smaller plan would simply grow too inefficiently to be able to provide the solutions you are looking for.

      The Bank On Yourself Professionals are masters at helping people free up the seed money to fund a plan, often by helping them restructure their finances. There are 8 places they typically look, as described in this article:


      But that won’t work in every situation. The Professionals do their best, but can’t work miracles.

  2. I read Brett Kitchen’s book and it was embarrassing to me. Do they think people are morons. Same thing in their videos. I watched one and Mr. Kitchen went on for 36 minutes and never said anything about what he is selling. He talked about getting a second job mowing lawns to have extra money to fund whatever it is he is selling. I am now sitting by the phone waiting for a pre scheduled appointment that was to take place three hours ago. They never even called.Do they really think a person looking to park in excess of a million dollars and looking for alternatives to other held investments would even consider a company that is so rude.
    Having said that I am curious to what you mention as up front costs when considering a person with less than $50,000 to invest. I already know the answer.

  3. Unfortunatly, I am too old to directly benefit from Bank on yourself. That is what prompted me to call the 800 number four Wealth Beyond Wall Street. After calling however, I quickly lost interest. The guy on the phone mumbled and slurred as if he had just woke up. Then, he ask a lot of questions which he declared would only take 2 to 3 minutes. It took much longer. Also he refused to answer any of my questions so I told him the radio ad sounded good but that he’s making their product sound more like a scam. When I asked him to quell my suspicions that he’s running a scam, he said that he simply has a script to read with questions and blanks to fill in and does not know the answers to any questions; so I hung up the phone.

  4. I have read your remarks, and I am somewhat confused by your position. I agree with your synopsis of the possible negatives of an IUL, but these seem like the exception. Any improperly funded, incorrectly designed, or misunderstood financial product has the potential to implode. More importantly, all products come with specific guarantees and conditions. It would seem to me that the proper approach would be to understand the benefits, guarantees, and risks of a product and align those elements with the client’s goals.

    Here is what I am getting at. You believe in the infinite banking concept. The IUL is a cash value policy that can indeed be used for the financial principles that you affirm. Whole life has also been used for this purpose. Just as you aggressively attack IULs, there are critics who would aggressively attack whole life. Just as I believe you have valid reservations for IULs, there are also valid reservations for choosing whole life.

    Above all, sometimes I think we believe in a financial product more than we believe in providing solutions to people. In the conversation of whole life vs. IUL, I believe it depends on the person. There is a place for the IUL in one person’s portfolio just as there is a place for whole life in another’s.

    I completely agree with your financial principles. I disagree with how you’ve created a cosmic conflict of good and evil between two products and the people that sell those products. It is an unjust dichotomy – both products were created to help people.



    • I get where you’re coming from. Indexed Universal Life (IUL) is much easier and “sexier” to sell than whole life. But the fact remains that NO other type of life insurance comes with as many guarantees as whole life and is the ONLY one appropriate for someone who is interested in the Bank On Yourself or the Infinite Banking Concept for that reason.

      Everyone should review this article I wrote on the 7 reasons to be wary about IUL:


      Most people are already taking far too much risk with their retirement nest-egg, and desperately need something they can fall back on – NO MATTER WHAT.

      I don’t know how long you’ve been selling life insurance, but years ago, many agents jumped on the Variable Life and Universal Life insurance bandwagons, assuming nothing could go wrong with them. But it did go wrong, and too many of those polices have imploded and the policy owners lost everything they paid into them. Banking On Yourself with supercharged dividend paying whole life insurance means never having to apologize to your clients when the sales sizzle of the latest shiny object shows up for the disaster it really is.

  5. What purpose does it serve to bash the competition.? I have used both whole life and universal life to fund the infinite banking concept for over 30 years and they both work equally well. I agree that some UL Carriers have increased fees in recent years but we have to agree that every whole life company has lowered dividend payments below projections. Some companies have even stopped dividend payments completely. Let’s focus on helping clients find quality companies and stop eating our own.

    • Whole life and universal life are not the same, because they do not come with the same guarantees. Coincidentally, I just heard from a someone who bought a universal life policy in 1986 and his premiums are now 600% higher than they were then, and continue to increase. He has to pay the higher premiums if he wants the policy to stay in force. And now he is uninsurable, so he feels he has no other option. That is the kind of product that I would only wish on my enemies. Read more about how universal life and whole life compare here:

      Whole Life Insurance vs. Universal Life Insurance

  6. Well I also called about the Wealth Beyond Wall Street and after talking to the broker who called me ( and probably buys these leads) I was very disappointed in the difference I the facts that I uncovered vs what the commercial boasts. Most of the returns they talked about were GROSS numbers of the index they were following. It took a lot to get them to admit that there was a significant insurance expense that drastically reduced the net return a client would actually harvest.
    The annuity products were much the same, exciting stats they read off but many were from 60 years ago and they didn’t even have the numbers for the recent 5 years on comparative indexes. Like many insurance sales people they had “their” stats handy with the stories that go along with them but it was hard to get any practical comparisons out of them. One annuity was boasted as 145% participation with no caps. The problem is that you have to stay in it for 12 years and they could drop the participation rate far below 100% later. The 145% is like an entry promotional rate to get you bought in. Index annuities have a purpose and aren’t all bad, its just if sold properly they aren’t exciting. They are there to reward those who can invest for ten years and want to beat the stingy greedy banks.

  7. How does one exit an IUL? I am 4 years into a 5 year Max Funded UIL. Policy costs are over 200% greater than the Index returns. Please advise.

    • So sorry that you had to find out the hard way that IUL isn’t the solution it is hyped to be. I suggest you speak with a Bank On Yourself Professional who can look at your IUL policy and review your options with you. You’ll get a referral to one of the Professionals when you request a free, no-obligation Analysis here:


    • D. I just got off the phone with a Wealth Beyond Wallstreet guy. When he found out that I actually understand his product and I pointed out that UVL is an absolutely horrible product with negative returns, due to the surrender charges for the first 5-15 years, he got very defensive and accusatory. He also attempted to tell me that these were great indexed products, and I informed him that all investments are based on some form of an index, ie the market, the dow, nasdag, s and p 500, other similar products, etc. I told him “index” was a buzz word that Universal life insurance sales people use to convince people they are getting something special. Again he got very irate with me. So… to solve your challenge of how to get out of UVL contact a “qualified” financial coach or planner which I just happen to be. I have 29 years of battle these guys and I can even show you how you may be able to get your cash value out of the product and maybe (its a long shot) all your premiums back from the company. If i can help out lmk. Dave W.

  8. Still find it hard to understand the different between the product you are advocating for and the IUL policy? If the ONLY difference the comfort I get that my premium will NEVER increase under the plan you advocate for?

    • Bank On Yourself is a safe wealth-building strategy that has never had a losing year in over 160 years. ​We’re​ happy to refer you to a Bank On Yourself Professional​ who can​ provide you with a no-obligation Bank On Yourself Analysis that will show you how you could benefit from a program custom-tailored to YOUR unique financial situation, goals and dreams.

      ​I​f you could take 5 minutes (or less) to complete a Bank On Yourself Analysis Request Form, ​we’ll get back to you quickly with a referral to ​a Professional​.

      You can request it here.

      Looking forward to helping you!

  9. I would like to follow up and agree with Patrick’s remarks and not necessarily disagree with your sentiments and or arguement. FIA and IULs are rather complex, but so too is an automobile and yet that does not stop us from driving them. As long as automobiles are able to meet our reasonable expectation of transporting us safely at a reasonable cost, we will probably continue to drive them, even if we cannot take them apart and put them back together. Indexing is a competitive alternative in a low interest rate environment, and market volatility. Plus no product is absolutely without risk. So, bashing products is not helpful. Simply discuss and disclose the pro and cons and make the product fit the clients needs. And I agree with you in that the insurance companies have a lot of discretion with the contract and are able to make significant changes, that is a risk. But if a policy is structured properly and there is no Bubonic Plague, the policy should perform accordingly. A new study was released and available in FA magazine that index annuities would have offered a better return than bonds for the last 90 years (and insurance indexing has no downside risk to principal). Interesting!


  10. I’m not affiliated with Wealth Beyond Wall Street or Bank on Yourself. However, after reading over the comments on this website, I feel obligated to chime in as there are definitely upsides to IULs that many folks, including those in the insurance and investment industry, are unaware of. (I am not attempting to solicit or sell anything by the way)

    Real IULs don’t result in loss:

    First off, IULs/EIULs are tied to an index such as the S&P 500 rather than the U.S. Stock Market, hence it is entirely possible to invest in an EIUL and not lose a penny regardless of how bad our economy tanks. The trade-off is there is a cap on annual growth (generally 8% is the cap) which means when the market is doing exceptionally well, you won’t see more than an 8% increase no matter what. Hardcore investors do not like the 8% limitation while most others believe in the principle of “never lose money.”

    An IUL is far more than a life insurance policy:

    There are EIUL policies with benefits known as “Living Life” benefits. The death benefit can be issued to the policy holder in part or in full in the event of critical injury/illness and/or disability. If (for example) you have a $1 million IUL policy and you become permanently disabled or critically ill, you can access the entire $1 million, TAX FREE and do with it as you please. With this type of EIUL, you essentially have a life insurance policy that you do not have to die in order to make use of.

    EIULs are superb for tax free retirement income:

    If your policy has a Lifetime Income Benefit Rider (LIBR), once you hit age 60, your policy will then be distributed to you as retirement income until the day you die and this income will be TAX FREE.

    EIULs can be used for personal loans:

    Lastly (and this isn’t anything extraordinary), you can take a personal loan out of your policy much like you can with Whole Life, 401k/TSP, or a ROTH IRA and do with it as you please.

    The EIUL I am talking about basically covers multiple aspects of benefits whether you die too soon, become seriously ill or simply live very long and need retirement income. If it sounds too good to be true, it’s likely because many people in general are accustomed to investing in the most common and seemingly “safe” avenues out there which is completely understandable. It should be noted that IULs are NOT cheap and are better suited for those with stable income and extra money to invest.

    I agree with others who commented that Whole Life and IUL both have their pros and cons and these types of investments are dependent on our individual lives/lifestyles. I will say to those who have been investing in IULs and are now paying massive premiums to the point it seems like a complete waste… Either the agent who ran illustrations with you prior to you signing the policy was immoral and did horrible job, or – you failed to thoroughly review the presented illustrations prior to signing the policy. To sum this all up, here is a synopsis from Investopedia:

    “Whole life insurance is designed to be exactly that – life insurance. In contrast, indexed universal life insurance policies are more like retirement-income vehicles: Cash inside of these policies grows on a tax-deferred basis and can be used to pay premiums. Plus, during retirement, policyholders can take tax-free distributions from the accrued cash value to help cover any sort of expenses – useful for those that have already maxed out their Roth IRA and other options. In fact, many policies are sold based on the concept of accumulating cash value rather than guaranteed death benefit.”

    • It is entirely possible for a “real IUL“ policy to lose value. In a year where when the market is flat or only increases a little bit, costs continue to be taken out of an IUL policy, and that will reduce your cash value. If you are not informing your clients about that possibility, you are in for some very angry blowback.

      You lost all credibility the moment you quoted Investopedia as your source for anything. We learned long ago how much incorrect information you’ll find on Investopedia, and your quote is a good example of that. It indicates that they don’t even know the difference between whole life insurance and term insurance.

      • I’m afraid you don’t understand how Bank On Yourself type policies are designed – they are specifically designed for high early cash value, so that they can be used to make major purchases in the early years, if the policy owner so wishes.

        In answer to your question about what are the lapse rates for Bank On Yourself -type policies – you may find it interesting to know that the life insurance companies jump through hoops to earn the Bank On Yourself business, because the lapse rates are so low.

        I also want to point out that you were not truthful on the Analysis Request Form you filled out and indicated that you were not a licensed advisor, so that you could get referred to a Bank On Yourself Professional. That shows that you are not a person of integrity, and are not invited to comment further on this blog.

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