Category Archives: Auditing and Financial Management

The DATA Act: Checking in on Spending Transparency

Federal agencies spend over $4 trillion a year. But how that money is spent isn’t always easy to track. That’s one reason why Congress passed the DATA Act—requiring agencies not only to publicly report spending data on USAspending.gov, but also … Continue reading

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Did You Know the Government Gets Audited, Too?

Tax season has many people diligently filing their returns to avoid being audited. While the federal government is not a tax-paying entity, it actually undergoes an audit of its financial statements every year. How do we know? Because we perform … Continue reading

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Saving Dollar Bills: Reducing Fragmentation, Overlap, and Duplication in Federal Programs

We released our latest report today on fragmentation, overlap, and duplication in the federal government. Since 2011, we’ve been reporting on ways the government can be more efficient and save taxpayers’ money by looking for programs that work on the … Continue reading

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GAO’s 2017 Performance and Accountability Report—More than $73 Billion in Financial Benefits

It’s that time of year again, the time we like to share the results of our work with you, the taxpayer. This year our audit work produced over $73 billion in financial benefits. In other words, for every $1 Congress … Continue reading

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The DATA Act – Working Towards Federal Spending Transparency

The Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2014 requires federal agencies to prepare and submit standardized, accurate information about the roughly $3.7 trillion they spend each year. The Office of Management and Budget and the Department of the Treasury are … Continue reading

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IRS: Taxpayer Tips Can Turn Into Cash

The Internal Revenue Service helps keep the federal government funded by enforcing tax laws and working to ensure that everybody pays their share. Nevertheless, every year some taxpayers—intentionally or inadvertently—overstate deductions, understate income, and don’t pay what they owe. The … Continue reading

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Updating Government Auditing Standards – The 2017 Yellow Book Exposure Draft

Today we issued an exposure draft containing proposed updates to Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards, also known as the “Yellow Book.” We invite your comments on the proposed changes, which reflect developments in the accounting and auditing profession.

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GAO’s 2016 Performance and Accountability Report—Over $63 Billion in Financial Benefits

Once a year we like to share the results of our work with you, the taxpayer. This year our audit work produced over $63 billion in financial benefits. In other words, for every $1 Congress invested in us, we returned … Continue reading

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Following the Money: The Audit Trail

You may remember from your elementary school civics class (or our previous Watchblog posts) that Congress allocates the money that executive branch agencies use to carry out their work. But who makes sure these agencies are spending this money correctly? … Continue reading

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Working toward Implementing the DATA Act

Federal agencies spend more than $3.7 trillion a year. But it’s not always easy to get reliable, useful, and consistent information about this spending—information that can help improve oversight, decision making, and transparency. So, Congress passed the Digital Accountability and … Continue reading

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