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Call for bank tests to be made public

SOME European Union nations want to publish confidential stress tests that assess how well European banks could cope with a worse economic climate, the top EU economy official said yesterday.

Banking supervisors from the EU's 27 countries will wrap up a test of the EU-wide banking sector in September to check how resilient it is to new shocks. The test does not assess individual banks.

EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said some governments want to see tests on individual banks run across the EU.

"Some countries consider that the stress testing should be better harmonized at the European level and should even be made public, as the Americans did," he said.

In the United States, the Federal Reserve tested the country's 19 biggest banks and told 10 of them - including the Bank of America and Wells Fargo - to boost capital by a total of US$75 billion to cover potential losses.


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