Stress-test results have been saturating the media this week as the big banks show off their hearty capital reserves and ability to withstand an economic pseudo-armageddon. Though this was the third annual test, the Fed added some of Dodd-Frank’s regulations into the mix, prompting the announcement of the first phase, the stress test, on March 7 — to be followed by the Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review results this Thursday.
Although banks — particularly big banks — have been the focus of media attention, any entity considered a bank holding company is subject to this yearly scrutiny. Two institutions that fit this description are Capital One Financial Corp. (NYSE:COF) and American Express (NYSE:AXP) , though both are often thought of as primarily credit card issuers. Both of these companies passed the recent stress test easily, though American Express bested Capital One Financial Corp. (NYSE:COF)’s 7.4% projected minimum Tier 1 common ratio with an 11.1% post-severely adverse-scenario capital cushion.