Moral Hazard


Moral Hazard
The risk that a party to a transaction has not entered into the contract in good faith, has provided misleading information about its assets, liabilities or credit capacity, or has an incentive to take unusual risks in a desperate attempt to earn a profit before the contract settles.

Moral hazard can be present any time two parties come into agreement with one another. Each party in a contract may have the opportunity to gain from acting contrary to the principles laid out by the agreement. For example, when a salesperson is paid a flat salary with no commissions for his or her sales, there is a danger that the salesperson may not try very hard to sell the business owner's goods because the wage stays the same regardless of how much or how little the owner benefits from the salesperson's work.

Moral hazard can be somewhat reduced by the placing of responsibilities on both parties of a contract. In the example of the salesperson, the manager may decide to pay a wage comprised of both salary and commissions. With such a wage, the salesperson would have more incentive not only to produce more profits but also to prevent losses for the company.


Investment dictionary. . 2012.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Moral Hazard — (engl., wörtlich „sittliche Gefährdung“, auch als Subjektives Risiko, moralische Versuchung oder moralisches Risiko bezeichnet) beschreibt das Problem einer Verhaltensänderung durch eine Versicherung gegen ein Risiko.[1] Ursprünglich ein Begriff… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Moral hazard — (engl., wörtlich „sittliche Gefährdung“, auch als Subjektives Risiko, moralische Versuchung oder moralisches Risiko bezeichnet) beschreibt das Problem einer Verhaltensänderung durch eine Versicherung gegen ein Risiko.[1] Ursprünglich ein Begriff… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • moral hazard — mor·al hazard n: the possibility of loss to an insurance company (as by arson) arising from the character or circumstances of the insured deductibles decrease moral hazard Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996 …   Law dictionary

  • Moral Hazard —   [ mɔrəl hæzəd, englisch], subjektives Risiko, ursprünglich aus dem Versicherungswesen stammender Begriff, der dasjenige »moralische« Risiko eines Versicherungsunternehmens bezeichnet, das über das echte Risiko hinaus entsteht, weil sich die… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • moral hazard — n. risk (to an insurance company) arising from the possible dishonesty or imprudence of the insured …   English World dictionary

  • Moral hazard — In economic theory, moral hazard is a situation in which a party insulated from risk behaves differently from how it would behave if it were fully exposed to the risk. Moral hazard arises because an individual or institution does not take the… …   Wikipedia

  • Moral hazard — The risk that the existence of a contract will change the behavior of one or both parties to the contract, e.g. an insured firm will take fewer fire precautions. The New York Times Financial Glossary * * * moral hazard moral hazard ➔ hazard * * * …   Financial and business terms

  • moral hazard — The risk that the existence of a contract will change the behavior of one or both parties to the contract, e.g. an insured firm will take fewer fire precautions. Bloomberg Financial Dictionary * * * moral hazard moral hazard ➔ hazard * * * moral… …   Financial and business terms

  • moral hazard — The situation in which a person has no incentive to act honestly or with due prudence. The term is mainly used in the insurance world, where a typical example of a person exposed to moral hazard would be the owner of an insured car, who has… …   Big dictionary of business and management

  • moral hazard — An expression of the insurance business; the chance or risk of the insured destroying the property, or permitting it to be destroyed, for the purpose of collecting the insurance. In the law of fire insurance, the term is but another name for a… …   Ballentine's law dictionary


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