IMF conducts stress tests in 5 European countries

The International Monetary Fund is conducting routine stress tests of financial systems in Britain, Sweden, the Netherlands, Germany and Luxembourg, an IMF spokesman said on Tuesday.

Washington: The International Monetary Fund is conducting
routine stress tests of financial systems in Britain, Sweden, the Netherlands,
Germany and Luxembourg, an IMF spokesman said on Tuesday.

"The timing of each assessment is typically determined
at the request of the country authorities," an IMF spokesman told Reuters.
"The UK, Sweden, and Luxembourg authorities had requested these
assessments several months ago, as had Germany and the Netherlands," the
spokesman added.

The IMF's so called Financial Sector Assessment Programs, or
FSAPs, were made mandatory in September for 25 "systemically
important" countries, including 15 members of the Group of 20 in a move to
forestall a repetition of the global credit crisis.

"FSAPs in these three European countries, as well as in
Germany and the Netherlands, are being conducted in the first quarter of this
year," the IMF spokesman said.

The IMF check-up accompanies discussions among European
finance ministers on details of new stress tests for shaky European banks.

The IMF's tests will be independent of those done by the EU.
Last year, Europe's stress tests failed to expose Irish banks' frailties, which
led to an 85 billion euro ($112 billion) EU/IMF bailout for Ireland in late
2010.

Bureau Report

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