IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Price Regulation in Secondary Insurance Markets


  • Jay Bhattacharya
  • Dana Goldman
  • Neeraj Sood


Secondary life insurance markets are growing rapidly. From nearly no transactions in 1980, a wide variety of similar products in this market has developed, including viatical settlements, accelerated death benefits, and life settlements and as the population ages, these markets will become increasingly popular. Eight state governments, in a bid to guarantee sellers a "fair" price, have passed regulations setting a price floor on secondary life insurance market transactions, and more are considering doing the same. Using data from a unique random sample of HIV+ patients, we estimate welfare losses from transactions prevented by binding price floors in the viatical settlements market (an important segment of the secondary life insurance market). We find that price floors bind on HIV patients with greater than 4 years of life expectancy. Furthermore, HIV patients from states with price floors are significantly less likely to viaticate than similarly healthy HIV patients from other states. If price floors were adopted nationwide, they would rule out transactions worth $119 million per year. We find that the magnitude of welfare loss from these blocked transactions would be highest for consumers who are relatively poor, have weak bequest motives, and have a high rate of time preference. Copyright The Journal of Risk and Insurance, 2004.

Suggested Citation

  • Jay Bhattacharya & Dana Goldman & Neeraj Sood, 2004. "Price Regulation in Secondary Insurance Markets," Journal of Risk & Insurance, The American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 71(4), pages 643-675.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jrinsu:v:71:y:2004:i:4:p:643-675

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: link to full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Abel, Andrew B, 1986. "Capital Accumulation and Uncertain Lifetimes with Adverse Selection," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(5), pages 1079-1097, September.
    2. repec:aph:ajpbhl:2001:91:9:1456-1463_3 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Nadine Gatzert & Gudrun Hoermann & Hato Schmeiser, 2009. "The Impact of the Secondary Market on Life Insurers' Surrender Profits," Journal of Risk & Insurance, The American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 76(4), pages 887-908.
    2. Martin Eling & David Pankoke, 2016. "Costs and Benefits of Financial Regulation: An Empirical Assessment for Insurance Companies," The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance - Issues and Practice, Palgrave Macmillan;The Geneva Association, vol. 41(4), pages 529-554, October.
    3. Mar Jori & Antonio Alegre & Carmen Ribas, 2011. "Deciding the sale of a life policy in the viatical market: Implications on individual welfare," Working Papers in Economics 256, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
    4. repec:bla:jrinsu:v:84:y:2017:i:1:p:127-151 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:jrinsu:v:71:y:2004:i:4:p:643-675. 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: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.