TRANSPARENCY

Merrill Must Disclose Bonuses

A victory for Andrew Cuomo: A judge has ruled that Merrill Lynch employees who received $3.6 billion in bonuses in December can be publicly identified as part of the New York attorney general’s investigation. Justice Bernard Fried today rejected Bank of America’s argument that compensation information was a trade secret: “The Martin Act vests in the Attorney General the discretion to decide whether to keep the information that he gathers in the course of his investigation secret or public,” he wrote. Cuomo—who’s been seeking the information as part of his probe of the bonuses, granted in late December before Merrill was bought by BofA—called the decision “a victory for taxpayers.” He added: “Let the sun shine in.”