Insurance Economics / Versicherungsökonomik


Thorsten Sehner



General Info

The lecture will be held in English.

German title of this lecture: "Versicherungsökonomik"

Further information on the lecture and all documents are available on Moodle.

Course Content

This course provides an introduction to insurance economics.

Topics addressed include:

  • Choice under uncertainty (expected utility theory and rational decision under risk, measure for risk aversion, mean variance preferences)
  • Insurance demands by households (base model, insurance demand without fair premium, Pareto-optimal insurance contract)
  • Insurance demand by firms (risk management and diversification, risk management forward, future and options, corporate demand for insurance)
  • Insurance supply (traditional premium calculation, financial modelling of insurance pricing, economies of scope, economies of scale)
  • Microeconomic analysis (moral hazard, adverse selection)
  • Insurance regulation


The lecture is designed for Bachelor and Master students of "Economathematics", "Mathematics", "Economics" or "Finance" that are at an advanced stage of their studies.



DAV Certificate

Within this lecture it is possible to achieve the certificate of the German actuarial society (Deutsche Aktuar Vereinigung DAV) in "Wirtschaftliches und rechtliches Umfeld" (PO 4). Note that this certificate is equivalent to "Versicherungswirtschaftslehre" (PO 3).

This certificate is a basic requirement for becoming an actuary in Germany. 

To achieve this DAV certificate, it is required to separately pass the final course exam (it does not matter if it is the first or the repetition exam) and a DAV supplement exam. (Note that the semester, in which you pass the final course exam, and the semester, in which you pass the DAV supplement exam, do not need to coincide.)


The main textbook

  • Zweifel, P. and R. Eisen (2012), Insurance Economics, Springer.

Further reading

  • Farny, D. (2006), Versicherungsbetriebslehre, 4. u. überarbeitete Auflage, Karlsruhe: Verlag Versicherungswirtschaft.
  • Felderer, B. und S. Homburg (2005), Makroökonomik und neue Makroökonomik , 9. Auflage, Berlin: Springer.
  • Schulenburg, J.-M. (2005), Versicherungsökonomik, ein Leitfaden für Studium und Praxis, Karlsruhe: Verlag Versicherungswirtschaft.
  • Vaughan, J. E. und T. Vaughan (2003), Fundamentals of Risk and Insurance, 9. Edition, Wileys & Sons.
  • Zweifel, P. und R. Eisen (2003), Versicherungsökonomie, 2. u. verbesserte Auflage - Berlin et al: Springer.