Diversification Made Simpler with New Asset Allocation Investment Option from Nationwide

Thu May 1, 2008 9:30am EDT

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

Nationwide Variable Insurance Trust (NVIT) Cardinal Funds one of
     Several Updates to Strengthen Variable Investment Choices for
COLUMBUS, Ohio--(Business Wire)--
To help consumers diversify their investments more simply through
asset allocation, Nationwide Financial Services, Inc. (NYSE: NFS),
today announced the introduction of the NVIT Cardinal(SM )Funds as
part of its annual updates to strengthen investment options within the
company's variable annuity and life products.

   "Consumers may realize the importance of diversifying through
asset allocation but feel overwhelmed at the thought of trying to do
so on their own, especially given the recent market volatility," said
John Carter, president of Nationwide Financial Distributors, Inc.
"With the NVIT Cardinal Funds we've simplified the process by
packaging renowned money managers and professional asset allocation
into one investment option."

   Carter said Nationwide's newest asset allocation solution includes
seven fund-of-funds managed for different levels of risk, from
conservative to aggressive, offering consumers a simpler way to

   "It's automatic diversification for consumers, leaving the
portfolio management to the investment specialists to work on their
behalf," said Carter.

   The use of diversification and asset allocation as part of an
overall investment strategy does not assure a profit or protect
against loss in a declining market.

   The new NVIT Cardinal Funds include:

   --  NVIT Cardinal Conservative Fund

   --  NVIT Cardinal Moderately Conservative Fund

   --  NVIT Cardinal Balanced Fund

   --  NVIT Cardinal Moderate Fund

   --  NVIT Cardinal Capital Appreciation Fund

   --  NVIT Cardinal Moderately Aggressive Fund

   --  NVIT Cardinal Aggressive Fund

   Ibbotson Associates, a recognized leader in the investment
marketplace, will develop the asset allocation models for the NVIT
Cardinal Fund portfolios while Nationwide Fund Advisors will select
the underlying investment options and portfolio managers, as well as
monitor the Funds' performance.

   All of the funds except Aggressive will be available for use in
Nationwide Financial's competitive portfolio of variable annuity
living benefits, The Nationwide Lifetime Income Rider(R) (L.inc) and
Capital Preservation Plus Lifetime Income(R) (CPPLI).

   Carter said the riders provide consumers with two withdrawal
options to choose from when the time is right based on their primary
needs, whether that's lifetime income with Nationwide L.inc or
principal protection through CPPLI.

   "Our living benefits already offer consumers flexible features
such as the ability to take excess withdrawals without jeopardizing
the guarantees, market participation with principal protection but no
upside ceiling, and guaranteed income without having to annuitize,"
said Carter. "Adding the NVIT Cardinal Funds provides another strong
investment option to help consumers further personalize their annuity

   Nationwide is also introducing new NVIT Multi-Manager Funds, which
are available individually and as underlying holdings in the new NVIT
Cardinal Funds. These new funds, designed to seek style consistency
over time, are managed by two or more subadvisors screened and
selected by Nationwide Fund Advisors.

   "The benefit to a multi-manager approach is that it gives
consumers an added level of diversification to help manage risk," said
Carter. "Each manager contributes to the portfolio's return, which
helps reduce the likelihood of dramatic swings in performance over

   Carter added that the Multi-Manager Funds are managed by
well-known retail fund families, institutional money managers and
boutique specialty firms, which offers clients access to strategies
that are usually available only to large corporate investors and
high-net-worth individuals.

   Five new NVIT Multi-Manager Funds will be offered, including:

   --  NVIT Multi-Manager International Growth Fund

   --  NVIT Multi-Manager Large Cap Growth Fund

   --  NVIT Multi-Manager Large Cap Value Fund

   --  NVIT Multi-Manager Mid Cap Growth Fund

   --  MVIT Multi-Manager Mid Cap Value Fund

   In addition to introducing NVIT Cardinal Funds and new
Multi-Manager Funds, Nationwide Financial also announced the addition
of new subadvised investment options in the Nationwide Variable Trust

   --  AllianceBernstein VPS Small/Mid Cap Value Portfolio Class B

   --  Franklin VIPT Founding Funds Allocation Fund - Class 2

   --  Gartmore NVIT International Equity Fund - Class VI

   --  NVIT Core Bond Fund - Class II

   --  NVIT Short Tem bond Funds - Class II

   --  Lehman Brothers NVIT Core Plus Bond Fund - Class II

   --  Neuberger Berman NVIT Multi Cap Opportunities Fund - Class II

   --  Neuberger Berman NVIT socially Responsible Fund - Class II

   --  Van Kampen NVIT Real Estate Fund - Class II

   Carter said Nationwide's role as a 'manager of managers' in a
subadvised platform allows Nationwide Funds Advisors to ensure the
renowned third-party money managers stay committed to the objectives
of each fund, which means consumers can feel confident when choosing
from investment options that can help best meet their financial goals.

   "Since we pioneered the multi-manager approach to variable
products more than 25 years ago our commitment has been to provide
quality investment choices, and the changes to our lineup this year
continue that tradition," said Carter.

   Variable products are sold by prospectus. Potential clients may
obtain both the product prospectus and underlying fund prospectuses
from their investment professional or by writing to Nationwide Life
Insurance Company, P.O. Box 182021, Columbus, Ohio 43218-2021. Before
investing, carefully consider the fund's investment objectives, risks,
charges and expenses. The product prospectus and underlying fund
prospectus contain this and other important information. Read the
prospectus carefully before investing or sending money.

   Variable annuities and variable life insurance products are issued
by Nationwide Life Insurance Company or Nationwide Life and Annuity
Insurance Company, Columbus, Ohio. Nationwide Life Insurance Company
is a subsidiary of Nationwide Financial Services, Inc., a publicly
traded holding company. The general distributor is Nationwide
Investment Services Corporation, member FINRA. In MI only: Nationwide
Investment Svcs. Corporation.

   Investing involves market risk, including possible loss of
principal, and there is no guarantee that investment objectives will
be achieved.

   The underlying investment options aren't publicly traded mutual
funds and aren't available directly for purchase by the general
public. They are only available through variably annuity policies
issued by life insurance companies.

   The NVIT Cardinal Funds and NVIT Multi-Manager Funds are
distributed by Nationwide Fund Distributors LLC, member FINRA, 1200
River Road, Suite 1000, Conshohocken, PA 19428.

   Nationwide Fund Advisors is not affiliated with Ibbotson

   Ibbotson Associates is a registered investment advisor and wholly
owned subsidiary of Morningstar, Inc.

   About Nationwide Financial

   Nationwide Financial Services, Inc. (NYSE: NFS), a publicly traded
company based in Columbus, Ohio, provides a variety of financial
services that help consumers invest(1) and protect their long-term
assets, and offers retirement plans and services through both public-
and private-sector employers.

   It's part of the Nationwide group of companies, which offers
diversified insurance and financial services. The group is led by
Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, which is ranked No. 108 on the
Fortune 500 based on 2007 revenue.(2) For more information, visit

   Nationwide, Nationwide Financial, the Nationwide framemark, The
Nationwide Lifetime Income Rider and On Your Side are federally
registered service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. NVIT
Cardinal is a service mark of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company.
Capital Preservation Plus Lifetime Income is a federally registered
service mark of Nationwide Life Insurance Company.

   (C) 2008, Nationwide Financial Services, Inc. All rights reserved.

   (1) Nationwide Investment Services Corporation, member FINRA. In
MI only: Nationwide Investment Svcs. Corporation.

   (2) Fortune Magazine, April 2008

Nationwide Financial Services, Inc.
Jeff Whetzel, 614-249-6354
Jeff Botti, 614-249-6339

Copyright Business Wire 2008