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Do asset regulations impede portfolio diversification? evidence from European life insurance funds

Bijapur, Mohan, Croci, Manuela and Zaidi, Rida (2012) Do asset regulations impede portfolio diversification? evidence from European life insurance funds. . Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc., New York, USA.

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Abstract

We investigate the effects of regulatory restrictions on the amounts invested in risky asset classes in life insurance funds across EU countries. By estimating a panel data econometric model, we find that these restrictions have an economically and statistically significant negative impact on risk-adjusted returns of approximately 1-2 percentage points, holding constant other relevant factors. The use of explicit limits on asset allocation can be a blunt instrument for regulating risk-taking, in that they impede investment managers’ ability to exploit the benefits of portfolio diversification, and thus distort portfolio selection below the efficient frontier. We also find that those countries which impose the most stringent constraints tend to experience the largest efficiency losses. Furthermore, our results suggest that firms subject to prescriptive regulation are less able to respond quickly under conditions of financial market turbulence. Our results are robust to inclusion of additional controls, tests for fixed effects and country-specific heterogeneity, and other robustness checks.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL: http://www.ssrn.com/en/
Additional Information: © 2012 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc.
Divisions: Economics
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HG Finance
JEL classification: G - Financial Economics > G1 - General Financial Markets > G11 - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
G - Financial Economics > G2 - Financial Institutions and Services > G22 - Insurance; Insurance Companies
G - Financial Economics > G2 - Financial Institutions and Services > G28 - Government Policy and Regulation
Sets: Departments > Economics
Date Deposited: 01 May 2014 10:37
Last Modified: 20 Feb 2019 03:39
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/56618

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