Crayen, Dorothee Hainz, Christa de Martinez, Christiane Ströh
Year of Publication:
Ifo Working Paper 137
Empirical evidence that migrants send home more remittances after disasters raises the question of whether remittances are used to self-insure, substituting for both formal and informal insurance. We investigate this question using a unique dataset on the usage patterns of financial services by households in South Africa. We show that the likelihood that a respondent has a formal funeral cover increases with income and banking status. However, it is lower for individuals receiving remittances, which supports the idea that remittances act as self-insurance. We also show that other risk management strategies influence the purchasing of formal funeral cover. Finally, we find that determinants of informal insurance differ from those of formal insurance.