Dutch finance minister welcomes European banking stress test results

Jeroen DijsselbloemFinance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem has welcomed the results of the latest European stress test for banks, which cleared all seven big Dutch banks.

‘The Dutch banks have done well and will even withstand the most somber scenarios,’ he told reporters. ‘Some other European banks need to take steps but that will not be an issue.’

Banks, he said, have take considerable steps to strengthen their capital base and clean up their balance sheets. The minister said he hoped the banking crisis is now firmly behind us. ‘I think this test will see a return to confidence from both investors and savers,’ he said.

The €2.8bn in provisions the Dutch banks still need to take is nothing to worry about, Dijsselbloem said. ‘Their portfolios and potential losses have been looked at critically,’ he said. ‘The European central bank has been tough and that is fine.’

In total 25 banks failed the test, nine of them Italian. But this is not cause for concern, Dijsselbloem said. ‘This shows it was a serious test. Four of the nine Italian banks have to raise more money and that is quite possible for them to do. They’ve got six to nine months to do it in.’

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