Actuarial Expert Witness On Insurance Capital

In Discussion of Insurance Capital as a Shared Asset, actuarial expert witness Robert Bear discusses what he describes as Donald Mango’s ground breaking work Insurance Capital as a Shared Asset:

Actuaries frequently allocate capital to line of business or individual risk in an effort to calculate risk loads or evaluate profitability by calculating a risk adjusted return in the form of a return on equity (ROE) metric. Concerns have been expressed about ROE methods, especially the fact that the value inherent in the unallocated surplus is ignored (the entire surplus supports each and every risk). In 2005 ASTIN Donald Mango’s paper on “Insurance Capital as a Shared Asset” has introduced a method that eliminates the need for allocation of capital which he believes is more grounded in insurer realities.

Donald Mango treats insurance capital as a shared asset, with the insurance contracts having simultaneous rights to access potentially all of that shared capital. Shared assets can be scarce and essential public entities (e.g., reservoirs, fisheries, national forests), or desirable private entities (e.g., hotels, golf courses, beach houses). The access to and use of the assets is controlled and regulated by their owners; this control and regulation is essential to preserve the asset for future use. The aggregation risk is a common characteristic of shared asset usage, since shared assets typically have more members who could potentially use the asset than the asset can safely bear.

For more, see Casualty Actuarial Society Forum, Fall 2006.