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Collusive and Competitive Institutions in the Swedish Insurance Market

Utgave: 2 / 1994 | Kategori: Forsikringshistorie, Annen skadeforsikring, Forbrukerspørsmål, Markedsføring og konkurranse, Tilsyn | Forfatter: Alexander Boksjö, Mikael Lönnborg-Andersson

The present structure of the Swedish insurance industry is the result of a long historical process, in which relational contracting between companies is of crucial importance. The policies adopted by the firms towards each other — their market conduct — were early characterised by a mix of collaboration and competition. On balance, this resulted in a market development, which in many ways is unique compared with other financial markets. The mutual interdependence of an oligopolistic market often results in agreements, which aim to cope with structural uncertainty; this is evident in the insurance business. Formal contracting was widespread, and many cartel agreements were signed, of differing spans and covering diverse areas of activity. Knowledge of insurance cartels is very incomplete. We neither know the persistence nor the frequency of cartel agreements. Another area where our knowledge is very random is with regard to which insurance branches the cartels have been founded and how this changed over time. Thus the purpose of this paper is to describe and analyse cartels of the Swedish insurance industry 1947—1980.