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Thai Non-Life Insurance Companies’ Resilience and the Historic 2011 Floods: Some Recommendations for Greater Sustainability

Kanitsorn Terdpaopong () and Robert C. Rickards ()
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Kanitsorn Terdpaopong: Faculty of Accountancy, Rangsit University, Pathumthani 12000, Thailand
Robert C. Rickards: Department of Business Administration—Public Management, German Police University, 48165 Münster, Germany

Sustainability, 2021, vol. 13, issue 16, 1-19

Abstract: The severe flooding occurring in parts of Thailand in 2011 constituted the fifth most costly catastrophe worldwide during the past 31 years. Many businesses suffered either directly or indirectly. A sharp downturn in the country’s economy resulted, with Thai non-life insurance companies’ annual losses totaling USD 4.1 bn. Focusing first on changes in their key performance indicators (KPIs) as evidence of their financial resilience, this study analyses data for 58 companies from 2008–2010 (years prior to the flooding), 2011 (the flood year), and 2012–2014 (the immediate post-flood years). Descriptive and inferential statistics depict differences in firm characteristics and key performance indicators between these periods. The findings show that: (1) not surprisingly, the floods had a major impact on Thai non-life insurance companies’ finances; and (2) even after two years, they still had not recovered fully. Then, employing Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA), the study assesses the relative efficiency of 58 Thai non-life insurance companies in using their assets to generate operating profit. The evidence indicates that: (1) larger insurance companies are more efficient than smaller ones in this regard; and (2) almost all the entities examined performed less efficiently during the post-flood years than in earlier periods. These results serve as the basis for recommendations to Thai non-life insurance companies, government policymakers, and future researchers. Although Thai non-life insurance companies survived the challenges they faced during the study period, implementation of the measures recommended here likely would boost their technical efficiency and financial resilience, thereby facilitating their ability to operate more sustainably in the long run.

Keywords: resilience; sustainability; floods; non-life insurance; technical efficiency score (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O13 Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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