Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

Moral Hazard, Risks and Index Insurance in the Rural Credit Market: A Framed Field Experiment in China

Contents:

Author Info

  • Cheng, Lan
Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    Abstract This paper studies the interaction between index insurance market and the rural credit market by investigating how the availability of index insurance affects borrowers' moral hazard behavior. Among different types of moral hazard problem in the credit market, we focuses on credit diversion, which occurs when borrowers violate loan contracts and use some or all of production loans for consumption purpose. We build a theoretical model to show that credit non-diverters are likely to benefit from and purchase index insurance, while credit diverters are not. For credit non-diverters, index insurance provides consumption smoothing and increases future income by preventing loan default. For credit diverters who are already implicitly insured by diverting credit from risky investments to consumption, index insurance increases their consumption risks and can even lower expected consumption level. The fundamental reason for the difference of the impact between credit diverters and non-diverters is that index insurance pays indemnities based on external indices rather than farmers' realized outcome. Therefore, the availability of index insurance encourages farmers to choose full investment of loans instead of credit diversion. To test these theoretical predictions empirically, we conducted a framed field experiment with 450 rural households in the north region of China. Coinciding with theoretical predictions, experimental results show that index insurance reduces the number of credit diverters by 75.8%. The treatment effect on credit diversion is heterogeneous across farmers depending on their risk preferences and ethical costs associated with violating loan contracts. The theoretical and empirical results have important policy implications for stimulating credit supply to agriculture and reducing credit rationing. They suggest that lenders can use index insurance as a signaling instrument to overcome information asymmetry in the credit market. Index insurance can be substituted for collateral requirements and lessen both quantity and risk rationing caused by collateral requirement.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/149670
    Download Restriction: no

    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Agricultural and Applied Economics Association in its series 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. with number 149670.

    as in new window
    Length:
    Date of creation: 2013
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:ags:aaea13:149670

    Contact details of provider:
    Postal: 555 East Wells Street, Suite 1100, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53202
    Phone: (414) 918-3190
    Fax: (414) 276-3349
    Email:
    Web page: http://www.aaea.org
    More information through EDIRC

    Related research

    Keywords: Moral Hazard; Index Insurance; Credit Market; Credit Rationing; Agricultural Finance; Institutional and Behavioral Economics; International Development; Risk and Uncertainty;

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    References

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    Citations

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ags:aaea13:149670. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (AgEcon Search).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.