New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has sent letters to Bank of America (BAC), Goldman Sachs (GS) and six other U.S. financial institutions that received assistance under the TARP funds seeking a description of each firm’s 2009 bonus pool and how they are constructed.
“As recent government actions have created new issues of public accountability and as private sector financial institutions are grappling with the consequences of these actions, we believe the need for full disclosure and transparency are essential and this reporting will assist in that effort,” Cuomo said in the letter.
Cuomo also points out in his letter that his office has a right to the information “to make sure [banks] are following the law, that there is no fraud, that there’s adequate disclosure.”
Cuomo’s announcement comes amid reports that Wall Street’s 2009 bonus season may be one of its largest. “Some banks made a lot of money because, in some cases, taxpayers gave them a lot of money,” Cuomo said at a news conference. Citing the nation’s 10% unemployment rate, he added: “The taxpayer is still paying that cost.”
Other major banks that received letters on Monday are : Bank of New York Mellon (BK), Citigroup (C), JPMorgan (JPM), Morgan Stanley (MS), State Street Corp (STT) and Wells Fargo (WFC).