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Traders don’t need Mnuchin to tell them equities are in trouble after he spends the weekend quizzing bank CEOs on their liquidity

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin plans to convene a call with the President’s Working Group on financial markets on Monday, a panel created in the aftermath of the Crash of 1987.Evan Vucci/AP Photo file

If the Treasury Secretary wants to keep tabs on the financial system when the market is tumbling, that’s fine. But the idea Steven Mnuchin can do anything to stop the worst market meltdown in a decade was met with skepticism among investors — and in some cases, concern.

Mnuchin called top executives from the six largest U.S. banks over the weekend to check on their liquidity and lending infrastructure, he said Sunday on Twitter. On Monday he’ll convene a call with the President’s Working Group on financial markets, a panel created in the aftermath of the Crash of 1987.

“Nothing says don’t panic like saying ‘I’m calling the plunge protection team tomorrow,”‘ Michael O’Rourke, JonesTrading’s chief market strategist, said by phone. “I honestly think that’s the type of event that’s going to startle markets and create more panic and fear when it’s meant to create confidence.”

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