De-Stressing

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My news feed tells me that stocks are up on the good news from the stress tests.  I'm not sure why.  It's long been obvious that the stress tests are like those kindergarten field days where everyone gets a prize for participating. 

The banks will be fine if the economy is fine, says Treasury.  (And the economy will be fine if the banks are fine!)  But then there are all those haunting passages in the Monetary History of the United States where they talking about how swimmingly everything was going in 1931 . . . right up to the point where the Second Banking Crisis, suddenly and for no apparent reason, appeared.

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Megan McArdle is a columnist at Bloomberg View and a former senior editor at The Atlantic. Her new book is The Up Side of Down.

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