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August 09, 2006 at 10:48 AM EDT
John Hancock Launches Enhanced Dollar Cost Averaging Program for Venture Annuity
Strategy driven by current market and interest rate environment

BOSTON, Aug. 9 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- John Hancock has launched an Enhanced Dollar Cost Averaging (EDCA) program for its Venture Variable Annuity. The program, which became effective July 31, is being offered as an incentive for those investors who prefer to ease gradually into a variable annuity investment instead of investing an amount all at once.

"Given how important it is for investors to be taking steps toward planning for a secure retirement, we wanted to help alleviate any hesitation some investors may feel about purchasing an annuity in a rising interest rate environment, and putting the funds to work amid a choppy equity market," said Hugh McHaffie, Senior Vice President, John Hancock Variable Annuities. "The combination of the trusted John Hancock brand and the EDCA rate support, we believe, will encourage investors to get started."

Under the EDCA program, investors purchasing a Venture annuity can allocate their purchase payments to an EDCA fixed account and automatically move a predetermined amount each month into the annuity's available variable subaccounts that the investor selects. The declining balance in the EDCA fixed account continues to earn the guaranteed EDCA rate until it is completely transferred over at the end of a six-month period.

"The EDCA approach is an important tool for a segment of the financial advisor marketplace, and we want to be responsive to their needs in serving their clients," said Bob Cassato, Executive Vice President of Distribution, John Hancock Financial Services.

The dollar cost averaging strategy available under the EDCA program helps manage the risk of investing at the top of a market cycle by "easing" into an annuity's underlying variable subaccounts over time, instead of all at once. An investor may achieve a lower purchase price over the long-term by purchasing more units when the price is lower and fewer units when it is higher. Dollar-cost averaging, however, does not guarantee a profit or protect against loss. Systematic investing involves continuous investment in securities, regardless of price level fluctuation, and investors should consider their ability to sustain investing during periods of market downturns. Potential purchasers should not assume that the special EDCA rate will be available for subsequent payments and the program may be terminated at any time.

About John Hancock and Manulife Financial

John Hancock is a unit of Manulife Financial Corporation (the Company), a leading Canadian-based financial services group serving millions of customers in 19 countries and territories worldwide. Operating as Manulife Financial in Canada and in most of Asia, and primarily as John Hancock in the United States, the Company offers clients a diverse range of financial protection products and wealth management services through its extensive network of employees, agents and distribution partners. Funds under management by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were Cdn$370 billion (US$332 billion) as at June 30, 2006.

Manulife Financial Corporation trades as 'MFC' on the TSX, NYSE and PSE, and under '0945' on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the Internet at

John Hancock, through its insurance companies, comprises one of the largest life insurers in the United States. John Hancock offers a broad range of financial products and services, including whole life, term life, variable life, and universal life insurance, as well as college savings products, fixed and variable annuities, long-term care insurance, mutual funds and various forms of business insurance.

Venture Combination Fixed and Variable Annuities are issued by the John Hancock Life Insurance Company (U.S.A.)* and John Hancock Life Insurance Company of New York and are distributed by John Hancock Distributors LLC, member NASD. The EDCA rate is supported by the creditworthiness of the issuing company.

*Not licensed in New York.

Contact your financial consultant or visit for more information, including product and fund prospectuses that contain complete details on investment objectives, risks, fees, charges and expenses as well as other information about the investment company, which should be carefully considered. Please read the prospectuses carefully prior to investing. The prospectuses contain this and other information on the product and the underlying portfolios.

Venture Annuity, the EDCA and the optional riders are not available in all states; product features may vary, subject to state regulation. Variable annuities are not FDIC insured, are long-term contracts designed for retirement purposes, and are subject to investment risk, including the possible loss of principal. Withdrawal charges apply to withdrawals taken in excess of the free withdrawal amount during the surrender charge period. All withdrawals reduce the death benefit and optional benefits. In addition, withdrawals of taxable amounts will be subject to ordinary income tax and, if made prior to age 591/2, a 10% IRS penalty tax may apply. For use with policy form number series VENTURE.100. Individual contract form numbers may vary depending on state of issue.

    Not FDIC Insured
    Not Bank Guaranteed
    May Lose Value
    Not a Deposit
    Not Insured by Any Government Agency

    Beth McGoldrick
    (617) 663-4751

John Hancock


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