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Insurance Supply with Capacity Constraints and Endogenous Insolvency Risk


  • Cagle, Julie A B
  • Harrington, Scott E


Negative shocks to industry capital and significant capital adjustment costs have been offered as an explanation of periodic "crises" in the property-liability insurance market. According to these capacity constraint models, in which post-shock production must meet a solvency constraint, increases in price can cause some or perhaps all of the costs of a negative shock to capital to be shifted to policyholders. This article develops a model of insurance supply with capacity constraints and endogenous insolvency risk that incorporates limited liability and potential loss of insurer intangible capital. If industry demand is inelastic with respect to price and capital, the model predicts that price will increase following a negative shock to capital, but by less than the amount needed to fully offset the shock. Equity value and the expected recovery by policyholders for post-shock production are predicted to decline. Elastic demand mitigates shock-induced price increases. Copyright 1995 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

Suggested Citation

  • Cagle, Julie A B & Harrington, Scott E, 1995. "Insurance Supply with Capacity Constraints and Endogenous Insolvency Risk," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 219-232, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jrisku:v:11:y:1995:i:3:p:219-32

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Neil A. Doherty & Christian Laux & Alexander Muermann, 2015. "Insuring Nonverifiable Losses," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 19(1), pages 283-316.
    2. Strauss, Jason, 2006. "The Impact of Price Controls on Mandatory Automobile Insurance Markets," MPRA Paper 11016, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Harrington, Scott E. & Danzon, Patricia M. & Epstein, Andrew J., 2008. ""Crises" in medical malpractice insurance: Evidence of excessive price-cutting in the preceding soft market," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 157-169, January.
    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. Sabine Lemoyne de Forges & Ruben Bibas & Stéphane Hallegatte, 2001. "A dynamic model of extreme risk coverage : Resilience and e fficiency in the global reinsurance market," CIRED Working Papers halshs-00800460, HAL.
    6. repec:pal:gpprii:v:42:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1057_s41288-016-0004-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. J. David Cummins & Christopher M. Lewis, 2002. "Catastrophic Events, Parameter Uncertainty and the Breakdown of Implicit Long-term Contracting in the Insurance Market: The Case of Terrorism Insurance," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 02-40, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
    8. Lakdawalla, Darius & Zanjani, George, 2005. "Insurance, self-protection, and the economics of terrorism," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(9-10), pages 1891-1905, September.
    9. Catherine Bruneau & Nadia Sghaier, 2014. "Cyclicity in the French Property," Working Papers 2014-47, Department of Research, Ipag Business School.
    10. Laux, Christian & Muermann, Alexander, 2010. "Financing risk transfer under governance problems: Mutual versus stock insurers," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 333-354, July.
    11. Niehaus, Greg, 2002. "The allocation of catastrophe risk," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(2-3), pages 585-596, March.
    12. J. Cummins & Neil Doherty, 2002. "Capitalization of the Property-Liability Insurance Industry: Overview," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 21(1), pages 5-14, February.
    13. Scott Harrington & Greg Niehaus, 2002. "Capital Structure Decisions in the Insurance Industry: Stocks versus Mutuals," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 21(1), pages 145-163, February.
    14. Dionne, Georges & Harrington, Scott, 2017. "Insurance and Insurance Markets," Working Papers 17-2, HEC Montreal, Canada Research Chair in Risk Management.
    15. Strauss, Jason, 2007. "Price Regulation, Market Exit, and Financial Leverage of Canadian Property-Liability Insurers," MPRA Paper 11212, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 28 Oct 2008.
    16. repec:ipg:wpaper:2014-047 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Strauss, Jason, 2007. "Equilibrium in the Insurance Industry: Price and Probability of Insolvency," MPRA Paper 11015, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Laux, Christian & Muermann, Alexander, 2006. "Mutual versus stock insurers: Fair premium, capital, and solvency," CFS Working Paper Series 2006/26, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
    19. Cummins, J. David & Danzon, Patricia M., 1997. "Price, Financial Quality, and Capital Flows in Insurance Markets," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 3-38, January.
    20. Altuntas, Muhammed & Berry-Stölzle, Thomas R. & Wende, Sabine, 2015. "Does one size fit all? Determinants of insurer capital structure around the globe," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 251-271.
    21. Tetin, Ilya, 2015. "Underwriting cycle in Russia and macroeconomic indicators," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 39(3), pages 65-83.
    22. Jiang, Shi-jie & Nieh, Chien-Chung, 2012. "Dynamics of underwriting profits: Evidence from the U.S. insurance market," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 1-15.

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