Date of Award

Fall 10-24-2013

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Risk Management and Insurance

First Advisor

Dr. Martin Grace

Second Advisor

Dr. Daniel Bauer

Third Advisor

Dr. Florin Bidian

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Tyler Leverty

Fifth Advisor

Dr. George Zanjani


This is a multi-essay dissertation in the area of dynamic models of the insurance markets. I study issues in insurance markets by examining individual behavior and industry performance in dynamic settings. My first essay studies household life insurance demand and saving decisions by applying a heterogeneous-agent life cycle model with wage shocks and mortality shocks. This essay proposes the most important determinants of household life insurance demand, and shows the joint decision of life insurance purchase between couples. My second essay focuses on the property-liability insurance market, and aims to study the impact of one catastrophe event on an insurer’s underwritings and capital raising strategy. The two-period cash flow model is built to also explore what kind of insurers can benefit from catastrophic risk underwritings. My third essay extends the second essay by incorporating a dynamic cash flow model with a series of loss shocks. I find the dynamic interaction between the insurer’s balance sheet and its capital rationing resulting from loss shocks. The model generates a non-cyclical behavior of output changes in the insurance market, and this suggests the current asymmetric, unpredictable and random underwriting cycles are temporary responses to loss shocks.