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Natural catastrophe insurance: How should the government intervene?

Author

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  • Arthur Charpentier

    () (UQAM - Université du Québec à Montréal , CREM - Centre de recherche en économie et management - UNICAEN - Université de Caen Normandie - NU - Normandie Université - UR1 - Université de Rennes 1 - UNIV-RENNES - Université de Rennes - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

  • Benoît Le Maux

    (CREM - Centre de recherche en économie et management - UNICAEN - Université de Caen Normandie - NU - Normandie Université - UR1 - Université de Rennes 1 - UNIV-RENNES - Université de Rennes - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

Abstract

This paper develops a theoretical framework for analyzing the decision to provide or buy insurance against the risk of natural catastrophes. In contrast to conventional models of insurance, the insurer has a non-zero probability of insolvency which depends on the distribution of the risks, the premium rate, and the amount of capital in the company. When the insurer is insolvent, each loss reduces the indemnity available to the victims, thus generating negative pecuniary externalities. Our model shows that government-provided insurance will be more attractive in terms of expected utility, as it allows these negative pecuniary externalities to be spread equally among policyholders. However, when heterogeneous risks are introduced, a government program may be less attractive in safer areas, which could yield inefficiency if insurance ratings are not chosen appropriately.

Suggested Citation

  • Arthur Charpentier & Benoît Le Maux, 2014. "Natural catastrophe insurance: How should the government intervene?," Post-Print halshs-01018022, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:halshs-01018022
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2014.03.004
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-01018022
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    File URL: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-01018022/document
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    Cited by:

    1. Clarke,Daniel Jonathan & Wren-Lewis,Liam, 2016. "Solving commitment problems in disaster risk finance," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7720, The World Bank.
    2. Arnaud Goussebaïle, 2016. "Risk prevention in cities prone to natural hazards," Working Papers hal-01358734, HAL.
    3. Thomas G. Koch, 2017. "The Shifting Shape of Risk: Endogenous Market Failure for Insurance," Risks, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 5(1), pages 1-13, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Strong Nash equilibrium; Government intervention; Insurance; Natural catastrophe; Externalities;

    JEL classification:

    • G22 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Insurance; Insurance Companies; Actuarial Studies
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • H84 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - Disaster Aid

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