Related Reports

ITEP Report: Understanding and Fixing the New International Corporate Tax System

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) radically changed the international tax system. It slashed taxes on corporate income, both domestic and foreign. It encouraged U.S. multinational corporations to shift jobs, profits, and tangible property abroad, and keep intangibles home. This report describes the new international tax system—and its many gaps—and also provides a road map for how to fix these gaps and surveys recent legislative approaches.

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Countering Russian Kleptocracy

Kleptocratic regimes use corruption as a means of control at home and a weapon of influence abroad. Russian oligarchs and other Kremlin agents have become adept at exploiting the global financial system to launder illicit funds and convert them into new forms of power projection, including attacks on Western democratic institutions. This report outlines a policy checklist that, if implemented, would amount to a comprehensive and effective strategy for countering Russian kleptocracy.

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Small Business Owners Support Legislation Requiring Transparency in Business Formation

The survey, conducted by Chesapeake Beach Consulting for Small Business Majority, revealed that 77% of small business owners agree Congress should pass legislation that would require businesses to list the true identity of their owners when forming, with roughly half (49%) in strong agreement. The poll was an online survey of 500 small business owners nationwide conducted between March 5 and 11, 2018.

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Hidden in Plain Sight: How Corporate Secrecy Facilitates Human Trafficking in Illicit Massage Parlors

Illicit massage businesses, commonly known as “massage parlors,” have been ubiquitous in the American landscape for decades. Today, new research finds an estimated 9,000-plus of these businesses are operating in every state in the country, with earnings totaling nearly $2.5 billion a year across the industry.

What is unique about this form of trafficking is that massage parlor traffickers actually go through the process of registering their businesses as if they were legitimate. Conceivably then, it should be relatively simple to determine the basics about these businesses — such as what products or services they provide and who ultimately controls and makes money from the business. The actual or “beneficial” owner would then in most cases be the trafficker and could be prosecuted as such.

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Anonymity Overdose – How our opioid crisis and shell companies are linked

Opioid deaths now exceed those from motor vehicle accidents. It’s clear we need to do more. Fair Share Education Fund’s latest report, “Anonymity Overdose,” connects opioid trafficking and the subsequent crisis with the activities of anonymous shell companies – companies formed with no way of knowing who is actually in charge. Because they shield the owners from accountability, anonymous shell companies are a common tool for disguising criminal activity and laundering money, and are also at heart of the Panama Papers.

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Hidden Menace: How secret company owners are putting troops at risk and harming American taxpayers

Since the financial crisis and release of the Panama Papers, we have heard a lot about the revenue governments lose to tax avoidance and evasion, but what about the losses resulting from corruption and fraud when governments spend money on goods, services and infrastructure?

Around the world governments spend $9.5 trillion each year on public procurement.  It should be no surprise that fraudsters, and corrupt officials, take advantage of this. According to research by the UN, corruption may amount to as much as 25% of the value of government procurement contracts worldwide.

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Ernst and Young Study Finds that 91% of Senior Business Executives Believe that Beneficial Ownership Information is Important

Never before have governments and multinational institutions cooperated so extensively in combating bribery and corruption. The transnational nature of the issue led the G20 major economies to recognize bribery and corruption as an important impediment to economic growth and the group’s focus on corruption has continued under its Chinese presidency in 2016. The G20 outlined its priorities in the “2015-2016 G20 Anti-Corruption Action Plan” identifying key areas where economies and multinational organizations must strengthen their cooperation.

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Global Shell Games: Testing Money Launderers’ and Terrorist Financiers’ Access to Shell Companies

For criminals moving large sums of dirty money internationally, there is no better device than an untraceable shell company. This paper reports the results of an experiment soliciting offers for these prohibited anonymous shell corporations. Our research team impersonated a variety of low- and high-risk customers, including would-be money launderers, corrupt officials, and terrorist financiers when requesting the anonymous companies. Evidence is drawn from more than 7,400 email solicitations to more than 3,700 Corporate Service Providers that make and sell shell companies in 182 countries. The experiment allows us to test whether international rules are actually effective when they mandate that those selling shell companies must collect identity documents from their customers. Shell companies that cannot be traced back to their real owners are one of the most common means for laundering money, giving and receiving bribes, busting sanctions, evading taxes, and financing terrorism.

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