A life insurance policy that combines life insurance with the features of a savings and investment account. The gains from the investments accumulate tax-deferred and the cash value of the policy can be borrowed against. A cash-value life insurance policy pays a death benefit to the named beneficiaries when the policyholder dies. The three primary types of cash-value life insurance are A whole life insurance policy, which lets the cash value of the policy accumulate depending on the return of the life insurance company’s investments in stocks, bonds, and other financial instruments. A variable life policy, which lets the policyholder choose the investments for the life insurance policy, selecting from a variety of mutual fund or other investment options. A universal life policy, which lets investors choose their investments among money market and Treasury securities; universal life policies were widely popular during the 1980s, when interest rates were high, but are less popular today.