Competition, Efficiency, and Soundness in European Life Insurance Markets
13 Pages Posted: 18 Jun 2016 Last revised: 8 May 2017
Date Written: June 15, 2016
This paper provides cross-country evidence on the association between soundness and competition in the life insurance industry, where competition is measured by the Boone indicator. We analyze 10 European Union (EU) life insurance markets over the post-deregulation period 1999–2011. The results indicate that competition increases the soundness of the EU life insurance markets. Since the Boone indicator measures competition based on the reallocation of profits from inefficient insurers to efficient ones,our results suggest that efficiency is the mechanism through which competition contributes to insurer solvency. The soundness-enhancing effect of competition is greater for weak insurers than for healthy ones.
Keywords: European Life Insurance Markets, Convergence, Metafrontiers, Cost and Revenue Efficiency, Environmental Factors
JEL Classification: G22, D24, F36
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