Index Insurance for Farmers

  • In this thesis we focus on weather index insurance for agriculture risk. Even though such an index insurance is easily applicable and reduces information asymmetries, the demand for it is quite low. This is in particular due to the basis risk and the lack of knowledge about it’s effectiveness. The basis risk is the difference between the index insurance payout and the actual loss of the insured. We evaluate the performance of weather index insurance in different contexts, because proper knowledge about index insurance will help to use it as a successful alternative for traditional crop insurance. In addition to that, we also propose and discuss methods to reduce the basis risk. We also analyze the performance of an agriculture loan which is interlinked with a weather index insurance. We show that an index insurance with actuarial fair or subsidized premium helps to reduce the loan default probability. While we first consider an index insurance with a commonly used linear payout function for this analysis, we later design an index insurance payout function which maximizes the expected utility of the insured. Then we show that, an index insurance with that optimal payout function is more appropriate for bundling with an agriculture loan. The optimal payout function also helps to reduce the basis risk. In addition, we show that a lender who issues agriculture loans can be better off by purchasing a weather index insurance in some circumstances. We investigate the market equilibrium for weather index insurance by assuming risk averse farmers and a risk averse insurer. When we consider two groups of farmers with different risks, we show that the low risk group subsidizes the high risk group when both should pay the same premium for the index insurance. Further, according to the analysis of an index insurance in an informal risk sharing environment, we observe that the demand of the index insurance can be increased by selling it to a group of farmers who informally share the risk based on the insurance payout, because it reduces the adverse effect of the basis risk. Besides of that we analyze the combination of an index insurance with a gap insurance. Such a combination can increase the demand and reduce the basis risk of the index insurance if we choose the correct levels of premium and of gap insurance cover. Moreover our work shows that index insurance can be a good alternative to proportional and excess loss reinsurance when it is issued at a low enough price.

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Author:Nilusha Karunathunge Gamage
URN (permanent link):urn:nbn:de:hbz:386-kluedo-66588
Subtitle (English):Modeling, Demand and Combination with Further Products
Advisor:Jörn Sass
Document Type:Doctoral Thesis
Language of publication:English
Publication Date:2021/11/17
Year of Publication:2021
Publishing Institute:Technische Universität Kaiserslautern
Granting Institute:Technische Universität Kaiserslautern
Acceptance Date of the Thesis:2021/11/05
Date of the Publication (Server):2021/11/17
Tag:Agriculture Loan; Basis Risk; Index Insurance; Market Equilibrium; Risk Sharing
Number of page:XI, 163
Faculties / Organisational entities:Fachbereich Mathematik
DDC-Cassification:5 Naturwissenschaften und Mathematik / 510 Mathematik
Licence (German):Creative Commons 4.0 - Namensnennung, nicht kommerziell, keine Bearbeitung (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)