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On the role of patience in an insurance market with asymmetric information


  • Sonnenholzner, Michael
  • Wambach, Achim


We analyse a 2-period competitive insurance market which is characterized by the simultaneous presence of standard moral hazard and adverse selection with regard to consumer time preferences. It is shown that there exists an equilibrium in which patient consumers use high effort and buy a profit-making insurance contract with high coverage, whereas impatient consumers use low effort and buy a contract with low coverage or even remain uninsured. This finding may help to explain why positive profits and the opposite of adverse selection with regard to risk types can sometimes be observed empirically.

Suggested Citation

  • Sonnenholzner, Michael & Wambach, Achim, 2006. "On the role of patience in an insurance market with asymmetric information," CFS Working Paper Series 2007/04, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:cfswop:200704

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Puelz, Robert & Snow, Arthur, 1994. "Evidence on Adverse Selection: Equilibrium Signaling and Cross-Subsidization in the Insurance Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(2), pages 236-257, April.
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    7. Hellwig, Martin, 1987. "Some recent developments in the theory of competition in markets with adverse selection ," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(1-2), pages 319-325.
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    13. de Meza, David & Webb, David C, 2001. "Advantageous Selection in Insurance Markets," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(2), pages 249-262, Summer.
    14. W. Henry Chiu & Edi Karni, 1998. "Endogenous Adverse Selection and Unemployment Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(4), pages 806-827, August.
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    19. Edward Nissan & Regina Caveny, 2001. "A Comparison of Large Firm Dominance in Property and Liability Insurance with Major Industries," Journal of Insurance Issues, Western Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 24(1/2), pages 58-73.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jing Ai & Lin Zhao & Wei Zhu, 2016. "Contracting with Present-Biased Consumers in Insurance Markets," The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance Theory, Springer;International Association for the Study of Insurance Economics (The Geneva Association), vol. 41(2), pages 107-148, September.
    2. repec:bla:jrinsu:v:84:y:2017:i:1:p:35-72 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Gemmo, Irina & Browne, Mark J. & Gründl, Helmut, 2017. "Transparency aversion and insurance market equilibria," ICIR Working Paper Series 25/17, Goethe University Frankfurt, International Center for Insurance Regulation (ICIR).
    4. Georges Dionne & Nathalie Fombaron & Neil Doherty, 2012. "Adverse Selection in Insurance Contracting," Cahiers de recherche 1231, CIRPEE.

    More about this item


    Insurance; Patience; Adverse Selection; Moral Hazard;

    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • G22 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Insurance; Insurance Companies; Actuarial Studies


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