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The Allocation of Governmental Regulatory Authority: Federalism and the Case of Insurance Regulation

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  • Martin F. Grace
  • Richard D. Phillips

Abstract

We investigate the incentives states have to provide insurance regulatory services in an efficient manner. Regulation of the insurance industry in the United States is unique, as it is conducted primarily at the state level whereas the majority of insurance sales are interstate. Consistent with predictions from the federalism literature, we find evidence of trans-state externalities, as states with small domestic insurance markets are less efficient producers of insurance regulation and appear to allow states that choose to expend the greatest resources to regulate for them. In addition, states with more profitable domestic insurers are shown to export greater levels of regulation, suggesting extraterritorial regulation may erect modest barriers to entry. We find evidence of increasing economies of scale in the production of insurance regulation after controlling for these regulatory externalities. Copyright The Journal of Risk and Insurance, 2007.

Suggested Citation

  • Martin F. Grace & Richard D. Phillips, 2007. "The Allocation of Governmental Regulatory Authority: Federalism and the Case of Insurance Regulation," Journal of Risk & Insurance, The American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 74(1), pages 207-238.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jrinsu:v:74:y:2007:i:1:p:207-238
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. James M. Poterba & Kim S. Rueben, 1998. "Fiscal Institutions and Public Sector Labor Markets," NBER Working Papers 6659, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. repec:aei:rpbook:53186 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Ann P. Bartel & Ann E. Harrison, 1999. "Ownership versus Environment: Why are Public Sector Firms Inefficient?," NBER Working Papers 7043, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Barros, Pedro Luis Pita & Hoernig, Steffen & Nilssen, Tore, 2008. "Keeping Both Eyes Wide Open: The Life of a Competition Authority Among Sectoral Regulators," CEPR Discussion Papers 6861, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Martha Henn McCormick, 2008. "Selected Research on Insurance Regulatory Reform: A Descriptive Bibliography," NFI Reports 2008-NFI-02, Indiana State University, Scott College of Business, Networks Financial Institute, revised Feb 2009.
    3. McShane, Michael K. & Cox, Larry A. & Butler, Richard J., 2010. "Regulatory competition and forbearance: Evidence from the life insurance industry," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 522-532, March.
    4. Burren, Daniel, 2013. "Insurance demand and welfare-maximizing risk capital—Some hints for the regulator in the case of exponential preferences and exponential claims," Insurance: Mathematics and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(3), pages 551-568.
    5. Sharon Tennyson, 2008. "State Regulation and Consumer Protection in the Insurance Industry," NFI Policy Briefs 2008-PB-03, Indiana State University, Scott College of Business, Networks Financial Institute.

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