Report: central bank policymaker concerned Europe could be too tough on banks in stress tests

BERLIN – A European Central Bank policymaker is voicing concern that Europe may be too tough on banks as they undergo “stress tests” to measure their financial resilience.

European officials are trying to make this year’s new round of tests tougher than a 2011 version passed by some banks that then had to be bailed out. It is being preceded by an ECB review of bank holdings.

Austrian national bank governor Ewald Nowotny, a member of the ECB’s governing council, was quoted Monday as telling German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung that “the test will be very tough, perhaps even too tough.”

He added: “My fear is that the ECB goes far beyond what the U.S. did with the ambition to do it particularly well. That could lead to exaggerations.”