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Insuring student loans against the risk of college failure

Author

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  • Satyajit Chatterjee
  • Felicia Ionescu

Abstract

Participants in student loan programs must repay loans in full regardless of whether they complete college. But many students who take out a loan do not earn a degree (the dropout rate among college students is between 33 to 50 percent). The authors examine whether insurance against college-failure risk can be offered, taking into account moral hazard and adverse selection. To do so, they develop a model that accounts for college enrollment, dropout, and completion rates among new high school graduates in the US and use that model to study the feasibility and optimality of offering insurance against college failure risk. The authors find that optimal insurance raises the enrollment rate by 3.5 percent, the fraction acquiring a degree by 3.8 percent and welfare by 2.7 percent. These effects are more pronounced for students with low scholastic ability (the ones with high failure probability).

Suggested Citation

  • Satyajit Chatterjee & Felicia Ionescu, 2010. "Insuring student loans against the risk of college failure," Working Papers 10-31, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:10-31
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    File URL: http://www.philadelphiafed.org/research-and-data/publications/working-papers/2010/wp10-31.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Lance Lochner & Alexander Monge-Naranjo, 2012. "Credit Constraints in Education," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 4(1), pages 225-256, July.
    2. Robert J. Gary-Bobo & Alain Trannoy, 2015. "Optimal student loans and graduate tax under moral hazard and adverse selection," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 46(3), pages 546-576, September.

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    Keywords

    Student loans ; Risk management ; Education; Higher - Economic aspects ; Insurance;

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