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Unformatted text preview: CHAPTER 27 Managing Risk Answers to Practice Questions 1. Insurance companies have the experience to assess routine risks and to advise companies on how to reduce the frequency of losses. Insurance company experience and the very competitive nature of the insurance industry result in correct pricing of routine risks. However, BP Amoco has concluded that insurance industry pricing of coverage for large potential losses is not efficient because of the industry’s lack of experience with such losses. Consequently, BP has chosen to self insure against these large potential losses. Effectively, this means that BP uses the stock market, rather than insurance companies, as its vehicle for insuring against large losses. In other words, large losses result in reductions in the value of BP’s stock. The stock market can be an efficient risk- absorber for these large but diversifiable risks. 2. As we have noted in the answer to Practice Question 1, insurance company expertise can be beneficial to large businesses because the insurance company’s experience allows the insurance company to correctly price insurance coverage for routine risks and to provide advice on how to minimize the risk of loss. In addition, the insurance company is able to pool risks and thereby minimize the cost of insurance. Rarely does it pay for a company to insure against all risks, however. Typically, large companies self-insure against small potential losses. In addition, at least one very large company, BP Amoco, has also chosen to self-insure against very large losses, as described in the answer to Practice Question 1. 3. Moral hazard : Having an insurance policy can make the policyholder less careful with regard to the insured risk and can therefore increase the odds of loss. Adverse selection : When an insurance company offers insurance coverage at a set price, without discriminating between high-risk and low-risk customers, it will attract more high-risk customers. Moral hazard and adverse selection both increase the insurance company’s losses. Consequently, the insurance company must increase the premium it charges. 252 4. If payments are reduced when claims against one issuer exceed a specified amount, the issuer is co-insured above some level, and some degree of on-going viability is ensured in the event of a catastrophe. The disadvantage is that, knowing this, the insurance company may over- commit in this area in order to gain additional premiums. If the payments are reduced based on claims against the entire industry, an on-going and viable insurance market may be assured but some firms may under- commit and yet still enjoy the benefits of lower payments. Basis risk will be highest in the first case due to the larger firm specific risk....
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This note was uploaded on 10/19/2009 for the course FINANCE finance mb taught by Professor Myers during the Spring '09 term at NUCES - Lahore.
- Spring '09
- Corporate Finance