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Stress tests show resilience of EU banking sector, says EBA

This year's banking stress tests show that the EU banking sector has improved its capital base "significantly" in recent years, the European Banking Authority (EBA) said.02 Aug 2016

Stress tests are designed to measure banks' financial resistance to adverse conditions. In the latest round of checks, 51 banks from 15 EU and EEA countries were included, covering around 70% of banking assets in each jurisdiction and across the EU.

The common equity tier 1 (CET1) capital ratio in the sample was13.2%, up from 8.9% in 2011, the EBA said.

Unlike in previous years there was no pass or fail to the test. Instead, each competent authority will discuss the results with individual banks.

The objective of the stress test is to provide supervisors, banks and other market participants with a common analytical framework to consistently compare and assess the resilience of large EU banks to adverse economic developments. Along with the results, the EBA is providing 16,000 data points per bank, it said.

Banking law expert Tony Anderson of Pinsent Masons, the law firm behind Out-Law.com said: "While this is good news generally, serious questions remain over the Italian banking sector following haircuts made to non-performing loans and whether this may mean additional recapitalisation is required for the relevant banks."

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