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US Government Report Shows $1 Trillion Went Untaxed In 2003

by Leroy Baker, Tax-News.com, New York

22 December 2005


A new report released by the United States government has revealed that US taxpayers did not pay tax on more than $1 trillion of income in 2003, according to Tax Analysts, which publishes the Taxwire news service.

The Commerce Department report served to highlight the differences between the Bureau of Economic Analysis’s 'personal income' figure and the IRS’s adjusted gross income amount, known as the AGI gap, in 2003, the most recent data available.

The difference between the AGI figure and the personal income measure is that the former consists only of taxable income, while the latter takes into account tax-exempt income and adjustments attributable to 'misreporting,' which includes both underreported and unreported income, as well as partially taxed income such as Social Security benefit payments.

According to the Commerce Department report, almost $425 billion of the $1 trillion gap was as a result of misreporting. The remainder of the gap was said to have no "easily identifiable" explanation.

The tax gap has grown steadily since 1999 when the figure was reported at $700 million.


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