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Journal of Risk and Uncertainty

, Volume 5, Issue 3, pp 253–272 | Cite as

Reinsurance and the liability insurance crisis

  • Lawrence A. Berger
  • J. David Cummins
  • Sharon Tennyson
Liability Insurance Symposium—Part II

Abstract

Insurance-industry accounts of the liability insurance crisis of the mid-1980s often cite disruption of supply in reinsurance markets as an important contributing factor. Economic theories of the crisis have not explored this explanation for the severity of the crisis. This article investigates the extent to which events in reinsurance markets affected liability insurance market outcomes. It documents significant shocks to reinsurance supply in the early 1980s and finds evidence of subsequent disruptions to the price and availability of reinsurance. Regression analysis of liability insurance profitability over the time period supports the hypothesis that problems in reinsurance markets played an important role in the crisis.

Key words

reinsurance liability insurance liability crisis 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lawrence A. Berger
    • 1
  • J. David Cummins
    • 2
  • Sharon Tennyson
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Insurance and Risk Management, Wharton SchoolUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia
  2. 2.Department of Insurance and Risk Management, Wharton SchoolUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia
  3. 3.Department of Insurance and Risk Management, Wharton SchoolUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphia

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