Bernanke notes 'stress tests' show stronger banks

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Associated Press

Posted on April 9, 2013 at 1:01 AM

Updated Tuesday, Apr 9 at 1:03 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke says the Fed's annual "stress tests" of major U.S. banks have become better able to detect risks. He says the tests show banks have grown much healthier since the financial crisis.

Bernanke is noting at a conference in Atlanta that this year's tests showed that 18 of the biggest banks had collectively doubled the cushions they hold against losses since the first tests were run in 2009. He says the tests are providing vital information to regulators.

The latest test results were released last month. They showed that all but one of the 18 banks were better prepared to withstand a severe U.S. recession and an upheaval in financial markets. The tests are used to determine whether the banks can increase dividends or repurchase shares.

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