Signaling and Indeterminacy of Equilibria in Unsecured Credit and Insurance Markets
I study strategic behavior under credit-based insurance.' It is assumed that higher consumer credit scores are associated with lower risk for insurable losses. Even when default is costless, some borrowers repay loans as a signal of low risk-type to insurers. There are multiple equilibria and equilibrium refinement techniques have no bite. The equilibrium amount of debt is indeterminate. For low credit scores, equilibrium involves randomization between default and repayment. This can explain the hockey-stick' shape of interest rates observed in several markets. Perfect information about consumer risk-type can lead to credit-market failure and lower welfare.
Volume (Year): 10 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
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