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Overconfidence, Insurance, and Paternalism

Author

Listed:
  • Alvaro Sandroni
  • Francesco Squintani

Abstract

It is well known that when agents are fully rational, compulsory public insurance may make all agents better off in the Rothschild and Stiglitz (1976) model of insurance markets. We find that when sufficiently many agents underestimate their personal risks, compulsory insurance makes low-risk agents worse off. Hence, behavioral biases may weaken some of the well-established rationales for government intervention based on asymmetric information. (JEL D82, G22)

Suggested Citation

  • Alvaro Sandroni & Francesco Squintani, 2007. "Overconfidence, Insurance, and Paternalism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1994-2004, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:97:y:2007:i:5:p:1994-2004
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.97.5.1994
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Paul Heidhues & Botond Köszegi, 2004. "The Impact of Consumer Loss Aversion on Pricing," CIG Working Papers SP II 2004-17, Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin (WZB), Research Unit: Competition and Innovation (CIG).
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    5. Xavier Gabaix & David Laibson, 2018. "Shrouded attributes, consumer myopia and information suppression in competitive markets," Chapters,in: Handbook of Behavioral Industrial Organization, chapter 3, pages 40-74 Edward Elgar Publishing.
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    7. B. Dahlby, 1981. "Adverse selection and Pareto improvements through compulsory insurance," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 37(3), pages 547-558, January.
    8. Michael Rothschild & Joseph Stiglitz, 1976. "Equilibrium in Competitive Insurance Markets: An Essay on the Economics of Imperfect Information," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 90(4), pages 629-649.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • G22 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Insurance; Insurance Companies; Actuarial Studies

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