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Insuring Eggs in Baskets: Should the Government Insure Individual Risks?

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Author Info

  • Hart, Chad E.
  • Hayes, Dermot J.
  • Babcock, Bruce A.

Abstract

The vast majority of crop and revenue insurance policies sold in North America are single-crop policies that insure against low yields or low revenues for each crop grown on a particular farm. This practice of insuring one crop at a time runs counter to the traditional risk management practice of diversifying across several enterprises to avoid putting all of one's eggs in a single basket. This paper examines the construction of a whole-farm crop revenue insurance program to include livestock price risk. The results show that at coverage levels of 95% or lower, the fair insurance premiums for this product on a well-diversified Iowa farm are far lower than the fair premiums for the corn crop alone on the same farm. The calculation of premium rates for the whole-farm insurance product is derived from a method for imposing correlations first proposed by Iman and Conover in 1982. The potential income transfer from crop insurance is also examined. We find that the income transfer due to the subsidization of single-commodity policies is greater than the total premium for whole-farm policies.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers with number 10669.

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Date of creation: 09 Jul 2003
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Publication status: Published in Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics, March 2006, vol. 54 no. 1, pp. 121-137
Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:10669

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Postal: Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070
Phone: +1 515.294.6741
Fax: +1 515.294.0221
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Web page: http://www.econ.iastate.edu
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References

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  1. Mahul, Olivier & Wright, Brian D., 2000. "Designing Optimal Crop Revenue Insurance," 2000 Annual meeting, July 30-August 2, Tampa, FL 21729, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  2. Babcock, Bruce A. & Blackmer, Alfred M., 1992. "The Value Of Reducing Temporal Input Nonuniformities," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 17(02), December.
  3. Keith H. Coble & Thomas O. Knight & Rulon D. Pope & Jeffery R. Williams, 1996. "Modeling Farm-Level Crop Insurance Demand with Panel Data," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 78(2), pages 439-447.
  4. David A. Hennessy & Bruce A. Babcock & Dermot J. Hayes, 1995. "Budgetary and Resource Allocation Effects of Revenue Assurance," Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) Publications 95-wp130, Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University.
  5. Bruce A. Babcock & David A. Hennessy, 1996. "Input Demand under Yield and Revenue Insurance," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 78(2), pages 416-427.
  6. Turnbull, Stuart M. & Wakeman, Lee Macdonald, 1991. "A Quick Algorithm for Pricing European Average Options," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 26(03), pages 377-389, September.
  7. Weninger, Quinn & Just, Richard E., 1999. "Are Crop Yields Normally Distributed?," Staff General Research Papers 5064, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  8. Babcock, Bruce A. & Blackmer, A. M., 1992. "Value of Reducing Temporal Input Nonuniformities (The)," Staff General Research Papers 10587, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  9. Hart, Chad E. & Babcock, Bruce A. & Hayes, Dermot J., 2001. "Livestock Revenue Insurance," Staff General Research Papers 1932, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  10. Levy, Edmond, 1992. "Pricing European average rate currency options," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 11(5), pages 474-491, October.
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Cited by:
  1. Bielza, Maria & Garrido, Alberto, 2006. "Evaluating the Potential of Whole-Farm Insurance Over Crop-Specific Insurance Policies," 2006 Annual Meeting, August 12-18, 2006, Queensland, Australia 25421, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  2. Cabrera, Victor E. & Gould, Brian W. & Valvekar, Mayuri, 2009. "Livestock Gross Margin Insurance for Dairy Cattle: An Analysis of Program Performance and Cost under Alternative Policy Configurations," 2009 Annual Meeting, July 26-28, 2009, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 49262, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  3. Singerman, Ariel & Hart, Chad E. & Lence, Sergio H., 2011. "Revenue Protection for Organic Producers: Too Much or Too Little," Staff General Research Papers 33912, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  4. Valvekar, Mayuri & Chavas, Jean P. & Gould, Brian W. & Cabrera, Victor E., 2011. "Revenue risk management, risk aversion and the use of Livestock Gross Margin for Dairy Cattle insurance," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 104(9), pages 671-678.
  5. Anderson, John D. & Harri, Ardian & Coble, Keith H., 2009. "Techniques for Multivariate Simulation from Mixed Marginal Distributions with Application to Whole-Farm Revenue Simulation," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 34(1), April.
  6. Paulson, Nicholas D. & Babcock, Bruce A. & Hart, Chad E. & Hayes, Dermot J., 2008. "An Insurance Approach to Risk Management in the Ethanol Industry," Staff General Research Papers 12938, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  7. Brester, Gary W. & Marsh, John M. & Atwood, Joseph A., 2004. "Distributional Impacts of Country-of-Origin Labeling in the U.S. Meat Industry," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 29(02), August.

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