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US considering making bank 'stress tests' public: report

business Updated: Apr 15, 2009 14:32 IST

AFP
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The US could reveal details about the health of its top 19 banks in a bid to reassure investors about the state of the ailing sector, local media reported on Wednesday.

The New York Times, quoting unnamed senior officials, said the administration of President Barack Obama was considering publishing the results of its analysis of individual banks, known as its "stress-tests." "It's becoming clearer that we and the banks are going to have to explain clearly where each bank falls in the spectrum," the paper quoted an official saying.

To date Washington has been reticent about publishing details of its analysis, fearing frankness would spark a run on banks deemed to have faired poorly compared to competitors.

The Federal Reserve had asked banks not to discuss the tests during earnings season, for fear of destabilizing markets.But with rumors swirling about the health of the some of the country's top financial firms, some are now advocating greater candor.

The information that may now be disclosed includes the size of potential loses.