On August 8, 2014, the European Central Bank (“ECB”) published a Comprehensive Assessment Stress Test (“CAST”) Manual which details, within the ECB’s comprehensive assessment, (i) how the systematic quality assurance of the stress test outcomes produced by the banks will be carried out; and (ii) the process for combining the results of the stress test with the asset quality review. The ECB is conducting a comprehensive assessment of banks deemed to be significant under the Single Supervisory Mechanism (“SSM”) in advance of it assuming supervisory responsibilities for the prudential regulation of banks within the SSM in November this year.

The CAST manual is available at:

http://www.ecb.europa.eu/pub/pdf/other/castmanual201408en.pdf.