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Default Risk, Bankruptcy Procedures and the Market Value of Life Insurance Liabilities

  • An Chen
  • Michael Suchanecki

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The topic of insolvency risk in connection with life insurance companies has recently attracted a great deal of attention. In this paper, the question is investigated of how the value of the equity and of the liability of a life insurance company are affected by the default risk and the choice of the relevant bankruptcy procedure. As an example, the U.S. Bankruptcy Code with Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 bankruptcy procedures is used. Grosen and Jørgensen's (2002) contingent claim model, implying only a Chapter 7 bankruptcy procedure, is extended to allow for more general bankruptcy procedures such as Chapter 11. Thus, more realistically, default and liquidation are modelled as distinguishable events. This is realized by using so-called standard and cumulative Parisian barrier option frameworks. It is shown that these options have appealing interpretations in terms of the bankruptcy mechanism. Furthermore, a number of representative numerical analyses and comparative statics are performed in order to investigate the effects of different parameter changes on the values of the insurance company's equity and liability, and hence on the value of the life insurance contract. To complete the analysis, the shortfall probabilities of the insurance company implied by the proposed models are computed and compared.

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File URL: http://www.wiwi.uni-bonn.de/bgsepapers/bonedp/bgse8_2006.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Bonn, Germany in its series Bonn Econ Discussion Papers with number bgse8_2006.

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Length: 37
Date of creation: Apr 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bon:bonedp:bgse8_2006
Contact details of provider: Postal: Bonn Graduate School of Economics, University of Bonn, Adenauerallee 24 - 26, 53113 Bonn, Germany
Fax: +49 228 73 6884
Web page: http://www.bgse.uni-bonn.de

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  1. Leland, Hayne E, 1994. " Corporate Debt Value, Bond Covenants, and Optimal Capital Structure," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 49(4), pages 1213-52, September.
  2. Black, Fischer & Scholes, Myron S, 1973. "The Pricing of Options and Corporate Liabilities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(3), pages 637-54, May-June.
  3. Bernard, Carole & Le Courtois, Olivier & Quittard-Pinon, Francois, 2005. "Market value of life insurance contracts under stochastic interest rates and default risk," Insurance: Mathematics and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 499-516, June.
  4. Pascal Francois, 2004. "Capital Structure and Asset Prices: Some Effects of Bankruptcy Procedures," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 77(2), pages 387-412, April.
  5. Carole Bernard & Olivier Le Courtois & Fran�ois Quittard-Pinon, 2005. "A Study of Mutual Insurance for Bank Deposits," The Geneva Risk and Insurance Review, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 30(2), pages 129-146, December.
  6. Eric Briys & Fran�ois De Varenne, 1994. "Life Insurance in a Contingent Claim Framework: Pricing and Regulatory Implications," The Geneva Risk and Insurance Review, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 19(1), pages 53-72, June.
  7. Black, Fischer & Cox, John C, 1976. "Valuing Corporate Securities: Some Effects of Bond Indenture Provisions," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 31(2), pages 351-67, May.
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