There was already plenty of reason to be skeptical about the so-called "stress tests", and even more reason to be skeptical about the bank earnings in the post-Mark-to-Market world, but this just confirms it.
(Reuters) – The U.S. Treasury Department is asking banks not to mention the regulatory "stress tests" as part of their first-quarter earnings results, according to a source familiar with government discussions.
In an attempt to assess banks' capital needs, the government is testing how they would fare under more adverse economic conditions than are expected. The markets are anxiously anticipating the results to see which firms get a clean bill of health and which firms will likely need more taxpayer help.
Once the stress tests are finalized and the capital needs are determined, banks will have six months to raise capital in the private market or could take an infusion of government funds.