New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has started an inquiry into bonus plans and lending volumes at some of the largest banks that received federal Troubled Asset Relief Program funds in 2008, his office said Monday.

Cuomo sent letters to Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Bank of New York Mellon, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, State Street and Wells Fargo asking for detailed information on bonuses and the volume of lending over the past three years, according to the attorney general's office.

In his letters, Cuomo requested details on how bonus plans have been drawn up and how they were affected by Tarp.

Bonuses have come under increased scrutiny as reports of record compensation abound amid an economy mired in recession. Banks have told employees to expect a larger percentage of their bonuses to be in equity rather than cash, according to published reports.

Cuomo has been looking into compensation practices on Wall Street since last year, when word got out about the size of bonuses at banks that received Tarp money.

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