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Why do some insurers become systemically relevant?

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  • Weiß, Gregor N.F.
  • Mühlnickel, Janina

Abstract

Are some insurers relevant for the stability of the financial system? And if yes, what firm fundamentals and aspects of insurers’ business models cause them to destabilize an entire financial sector? We find that several insurers did indeed contribute significantly to the instability of the U.S. financial sector during the recent financial crisis. We empirically confirm that insurers that were most exposed to systemic risk were on average larger, relied more heavily on non-policyholder liabilities and had higher ratios of investment income to net revenues. Contrary to current conjectures of insurance regulators, we find that the contribution of insurers to systemic risk is only driven by insurer size.

Suggested Citation

  • Weiß, Gregor N.F. & Mühlnickel, Janina, 2014. "Why do some insurers become systemically relevant?," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 13(C), pages 95-117.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:finsta:v:13:y:2014:i:c:p:95-117
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jfs.2014.05.001
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    Cited by:

    1. Anna Denkowska & Stanis{l}aw Wanat, 2019. "Linkages and systemic risk in the European insurance sector: Some new evidence based on dynamic spanning trees," Papers 1908.01142, arXiv.org, revised Aug 2019.
    2. Teresa Czerwinska, 2015. "Recovery and Resolution – New Mechanisms for Systemic Risk Management in the Insurance Sector (Restrukturyzacja i uporzadkowana likwidacja – jako nowe instrumenty zarzadzania ryzykiem systemowym w sek," Problemy Zarzadzania, University of Warsaw, Faculty of Management, vol. 13(55), pages 220-236.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Financial crises; Insurance industry; Systemic risk;

    JEL classification:

    • G22 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Insurance; Insurance Companies; Actuarial Studies
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance

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