Moral hazard and nonlinear pricing in a general equilibrium model

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The paper analyzes a two period general equilibrium model with individual risk and moral hazard. Each household faces two individual states of nature in the second period. These states solely differ in the household's vector of initial endowments, which is strictly larger in the first state (good state) than in the second state (bad state). In the first period households choose a non-observable action. Higher leveis of action give higher probability of the good state of nature to occur, but lower leveIs of utility. Households have access to an insurance market that allows transfer of income across states of oature. I consider two models of financiaI markets, the price-taking behavior model and the nonlínear pricing modelo In the price-taking behavior model suppliers of insurance have a belief about each household's actíon and take asset prices as given. A variation of standard arguments shows the existence of a rational expectations equilibrium. For a generic set of economies every equilibrium is constraíned sub-optímal: there are commodity prices and a reallocation of financiaI assets satisfying the first period budget constraint such that, at each household's optimal choice given those prices and asset reallocation, markets clear and every household's welfare improves. In the nonlinear pricing model suppliers of insurance behave strategically offering nonlinear pricing contracts to the households. I provide sufficient conditions for the existence of equilibrium and investigate the optimality properties of the modeI. If there is a single commodity then every equilibrium is constrained optimaI. Ir there is more than one commodity, then for a generic set of economies every equilibrium is constrained sub-optimaI.

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