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Collusion in a One-Period Insurance Market with Adverse Selection

  • Willington Manuel

    ()

    (Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez)

  • Alegría Alexander

    ()

    (Pontificia Universidad Javeriana de Cali)

We show that collusive-seeming outcomes may occur in equilibrium in a one-period competitive insurance market characterized by adverse selection. We build on the Inderst and Wambach (2001) model and assume that insurance is compulsory and involves a minimum premium and minimum coverage; these are common features in many health systems. In this setup we show that there is a range of equilibria, from the zero profit one where low-risks implicitly subsidize high risks, to one where firms obtain profits with both types of consumers. Moreover, we show that rents only partially dissipate if we assume free entry. Along these equilibria, high risks always obtain full insurance, while the low risks' coverage decreases as the firms' profits increase.

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Article provided by De Gruyter in its journal The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy.

Volume (Year): 12 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 (April)
Pages: 1-32

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Handle: RePEc:bpj:bejeap:v:12:y:2012:i:1:n:14
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  1. Hellwig, Martin, 1987. "Some recent developments in the theory of competition in markets with adverse selection ," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(1-2), pages 319-325.
  2. Asheim, Geir B. & Nilssen, Tore, 1996. "Non-discriminating renegotiation in a competitive insurance market," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(9), pages 1717-1736, December.
  3. Rothschild, Michael & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1976. "Equilibrium in Competitive Insurance Markets: An Essay on the Economics of Imperfect Information," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 90(4), pages 630-49, November.
  4. Joseph P. Newhouse, 1996. "Reimbursing Health Plans and Health Providers: Efficiency in Production versus Selection," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(3), pages 1236-1263, September.
  5. Ronald D. Fischer & Pablo Serra, 1997. "Análisis económico del sistema de seguros de salud en Chile," Documentos de Trabajo 17, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
  6. Hellwig, Martin F., 1988. "A note on the specification of interfirm communication in insurance markets with adverse selection," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 154-163, October.
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