The use of derivatives by US insurers: Empirical evidence and regulatory issues
Purpose – Derivatives are important risk management tools widely used by financial institutions, including insurers. Insurers rely on derivatives for managing actuarial, market, credit as well as liquidity risks. There is lack of knowledge and publication about the recent use of derivatives by insurers. This paper attempts to fill the gap in the literature. Design/methodology/approach – The paper analyses data based on statutory company filings with state regulators in the USA. Findings – The analysis suggests that derivatives are used by larger companies, especially in the life insurance industry. This could be explained by the significant economies of scale that are possible when using derivatives. Smaller firms do not have the resources to invest in the latest risk management technologies, and management may be uncomfortable using such new tools. Surveys and anecdotal evidence also suggest that, for insurance companies, the lack of familiarity with the regulatory and accounting treatment of derivatives is another reason for their cautious derivative usage. Originality/value – The main value of the paper is the analysis of derivative usage by insurers based on recent data. The brief description of accounting and regulatory issues concerning insurance industry usage of derivatives, provided in the paper, would be useful to managers in insurance companies considering use of derivatives. The paper would also be useful to market participants interested in providing derivative-based solutions to insurance companies.
Accounting, Derivative markets, Insurance companies, Regulation, Risk management, United States of America
In order to set up a list of libraries that you have access to,
you must first login
or sign up.
Then set up a personal list of libraries from your profile page by
clicking on your user name at the top right of any screen.