Department of the Treasury (1 - 10 of 2,767 items) in Custom Date Range
Revenue Collections and Payments: Treasury Has Used Financial Agents in Evolving Ways but Could Improve Transparency
GAO-17-176: Published: Jan 25, 2017. Publicly Released: Feb 24, 2017.
The Department of the Treasury's (Treasury) use of financial agents has evolved as it has moved from paper to electronic transactions in response to changes in technology and new laws. Treasury has a long history of using financial agents to support its core functions of disbursing payments and collecting revenue. Since the 1980s, Treasury has used agents to move from paper to electronic transacti...
2016 Filing Season: IRS Improved Telephone Service but Needs to Better Assist Identity Theft Victims and Prevent Release of Fraudulent Refunds
GAO-17-186: Published: Jan 31, 2017. Publicly Released: Jan 31, 2017.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) provided better telephone service to callers during the 2016 filing season—generally between January and mid-April—compared to 2015. However, its performance during the full fiscal year remained low. IRS does not make this nor other types of customer service information easily available to taxpayers, such as in an online dashboard. Without easily accessible i...
International Taxation: Information on the Potential Impact on IRS and U.S. Multinationals of Revised International Guidance on Transfer Pricing
GAO-17-103: Published: Jan 27, 2017. Publicly Released: Jan 27, 2017.
In 2015, the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) issued revised guidelines, including 15 actions to help reduce base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) of multinational enterprises (MNEs). One action focuses on transfer pricing guidance with the intent of aligning MNE profits with the location of economic activity, and preventing corporations from shifting and assigning p...
Cuba: U.S. Policy Changes Increased Engagement with Private Sector, but Agency Information Collection Is Limited
GAO-17-201: Published: Dec 15, 2016. Publicly Released: Jan 17, 2017.
View Spanish version of Highlights (PDF, 1 page).What GAO FoundThe Cuban private sector has grown rapidly since 2008 but remains small compared with other economies and faces various constraints. The Cuban private sector includes (1) self-employed entrepreneurs, (2) agricultural cooperatives and other private farmers, and (3) nonagricultural cooperatives. Cuban government data indicate that the pe...
The Nation's Fiscal Health: Action is Needed to Address the Federal Government's Fiscal Future
GAO-17-237SP: Published: Jan 17, 2017. Publicly Released: Jan 17, 2017.
The Congress and incoming Administration face serious economic, security, and social challenges that will require difficult policy choices in the short term about the level of federal spending and investments as well as ways to obtain needed resources. At the same time, the federal government is highly leveraged in debt by historical norms. In addition to near term financing decisions, a broader p...
Financial Audit: Fiscal Years 2016 and 2015 Consolidated Financial Statements of the U.S. Government
GAO-17-283R: Published: Jan 12, 2017. Publicly Released: Jan 12, 2017.
To operate as effectively and efficiently as possible, Congress, the administration, and federal managers must have ready access to reliable and complete financial and performance information—both for individual federal entities and for the federal government as a whole. GAO’s report on the U.S. government’s consolidated financial statements for fiscal years 2016 and 2015 underscores that mu...
Terrorism Risk Insurance: Market Challenges May Exist for Current Structure and Alternative Approaches
GAO-17-62: Published: Jan 12, 2017. Publicly Released: Jan 12, 2017.
Under the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act's (TRIA) current structure, insurers manage their terrorism exposure to cover their share of losses and not the federal share of losses, which may be recouped from policyholders after an event. Specifically, insurers do not assume the risk of the federal share of potential losses and, thus, do not consider the potential federal share of losses in how they man...
Retirement Security: Improved Guidance Could Help Account Owners Understand the Risks of Investing in Unconventional Assets
GAO-17-102: Published: Dec 8, 2016. Publicly Released: Jan 9, 2017.
Federal data collection efforts to date have captured little information on retirement accounts holding unconventional assets—such as real estate, precious metals, private equity, and virtual currency—making the prevalence of such accounts unknown. In tax year 2015, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) began requiring that custodians or trustees of individual retirement accounts (IRA)—includin...
Troubled Asset Relief Program: Status of Housing Programs
GAO-17-236: Published: Jan 9, 2017. Publicly Released: Jan 9, 2017.
As of October 31, 2016, the Department of the Treasury (Treasury) had disbursed $22.6 billion (60 percent) of the $37.51 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) funds obligated to the three housing programs (see fig.).The Making Home Affordable (MHA) program allowed homeowners to apply for loan modifications to avoid foreclosure. Under this program, which was closed to applicants on December...
Social Security Offsets: Improvements to Program Design Could Better Assist Older Student Loan Borrowers with Obtaining Permitted Relief
GAO-17-45: Published: Dec 19, 2016. Publicly Released: Dec 20, 2016.
Older borrowers (age 50 and older) who default on federal student loans and must repay that debt with a portion of their Social Security benefits often have held their loans for decades and had about 15 percent of their benefit payment withheld. This withholding is called an offset. GAO's analysis of characteristics of student loan debt using data from the Departments of Education (Education), Tre...