We examine the pricing of financial crash insurance during the 2007-2009 financial crisis in U.S. option markets, and we show that a large amount of aggregate tail risk is missing from the cost of financial sector crash insurance during the crisis. The difference in costs between out-of-the-money put options for individual banks and puts on the financial sector index increases fourfold from its pre-crisis 2003-2007 level. We provide evidence that a collective government guarantee for the financial sector lowers index put prices far more than those of individual banks and explains the increase in the basket-index put spread.
American Economic Reviewvol.
106, (June 01, 2016):