Federal Insurance Programs

Direct arms of the federal government insure against property, liability, or credit losses of more than $7 trillion in potential payouts in a worst-case scenario. The largest insurance programs are:

Program Volume of Insured Risk
Deposit Insurance $3.7 trillion
Pension Insurance $2.2 trillion
Flood Insurance $0.7 trillion

The federal financial institutions often dominate these insurance categories and sometimes operate as monopoly providers. Insurance is offered through many different federal entities. These entities range from programs within Cabinet departments, to independent agencies, to federal corporations. In some cases, such as flood insurance, the private sector actually offers the insurance to individuals or businesses. However, the offerings are standard programs approved by the government and the government takes over the insurance risk from the private sector.

Listing of federal insurance programs

A listing of the federal insurance programs, with details about their size, purpose, organizational structure, and website links. Download PDF version

We would appreciate any suggestions for enhancing this listing. There is no comprehensive federal listing analogous to that for credit programs, so we have laboriously assembled this information from agency websites and other sources, such as the occasional report from GAO or CBO.

Federal Insurance Program Summaries

Summaries of selected federal insurance programs describing their overall structure, premium and coverage provisions, financial status, budget impacts, and current issues.

Department of Agriculture

Federal Crop Insurance Corporation
The FCIC provides crop reinsurance and partially subsidizes farmer premiums in order to mitigate against natural disasters and price fluctuations. Download PDF version

Department of Homeland Security

National Flood Insurance Program
The NFIP provides flood insurance and reinsurance to various property owners. Go to Flood Insurance Publications

Department of Treasury

Terrorism Risk Insurance
The Treasury Dept. administers terrorism reinsurance under the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act. Go to TRIA Publications

Other Independent Agencies

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
The FDIC insures deposits in member banks and thrifts. Download PDF version

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation
The PBGC insures single- and mutli-employer defined benefit pension plans. Go to PBGC Publications