May 26, 2017
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May 26, 2017
May 26, 2017
In a post Panama Papers world, secrecy seems to be losing its caché. Public officials and the citizens they represent express increasing frustration with the hidden finances of powerful multinational companies and the ultra-wealthy.
In recent months, tax enforcement in the European Union (EU) has been stepped up with cases accusing tax haven countries of providing illegal state aid, aggressive tax avoidance strategies are being challenged and there is a promising push for greater financial transparency and accountability.Read More...
April 6, 2017
Tax haven abuse undermines the fairness of our tax code. By shifting profits to offshore tax havens, multinational corporations avoid over $100 billion in taxes each year. Wealthy individuals evade an estimated $40 to $70 billion. The Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act of 2017 (S. 851/H.R. 1932) will close many of the loopholes that allow multinational companies and the wealthy to play by a different set of rules than the rest of us.Read More...
March 23, 2017
On March 17, Richard Phillips of the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) and I traveled to Norwalk, Connecticut to participate in a roundtable discussion at the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB). This is a little-known, but highly influential body that sets the accounting standards for U.S. companies. The morning discussion focused on a proposal to increase disclosures on corporate financial statements, including new disclosures on revenues and taxes on a country-by-country level. This information is critically important if we are to tackle the problem of offshoring profits in tax havens.
We heard several participants assert that, before any new disclosures are required, board members must ensure they know why it is being required and for what the users of the information will use it. Fair questions.
Unfortunately, I am not sure the discussion on tax disclosures adequately answered them. The focus was more theoretical and principle-based with a heavy reliance on accountant-speak. I greatly appreciated the opportunity to participate, but I confess that I did not fully take the opportunity to offer an alternative perspective. Since hindsight is 20/20, here is what I should have said.Read More...
January 26, 2017
Lawmakers in the House of Representatives are expected to introduce a controversial resolution to repeal a bipartisan anti-corruption safeguard, in a move panned by non-partisan anti-corruption experts.
Former Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) and Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) sponsored the Energy Security Through Transparency Act, as an amendment to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. The provision protects U.S. national security and combats corruption in developing countries (particularly those plagued by extremist violence and conflict) by requiring oil, gas, and mining companies which report to the Securities and Exchange Commission to publicly report all payments made to host-governments.Read More...
October 4, 2016
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The largest American companies have stashed nearly $2.5 trillion in profits offshore allowing them to dodge $718 billion in U.S. taxes, according to a new report released Tuesday by Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ), the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP), and the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) Education Fund—all members of the Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency Coalition (FACT Coalition).Read More...
October 3, 2016
The FACT Coalition filed a comment on October 3, 2016 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) cautioning the agency against proceeding with a rule to reduce disclosure to investors and urging the SEC to instead boost transparency through public country-by-country reporting.Read More...
September 30, 2016
WASHINGTON, D.C. – A broad alliance of organizations and coalitions submitted comments to the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) today—urging the body to require multinational companies to be more transparent about their tax practices. FASB, the private body which sets financial accounting and reporting standards in the United States, has suggested a number of changes to increase the disclosure of foreign tax and income information by companies in their public filings.Read More...
September 22, 2016
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) today introduced a new bill, which would shine a light on the offshore tax practices of multinational companies. The Corporate Transparency and Accountability Act of 2016 would require publicly-traded multinational companies to report in their disclosure statements to investors information about revenues, profits, taxes, and certain operations on a country-by-country basis.Read More...
September 22, 2016
The FACT Coalition sent a letter to Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) and the leaders of the U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services Committee in support of the Corporate Transparency and Accountability Act of 2016 (H.R.6126).Read More...