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tax

It's a pillar of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) 2017 and it's about to appear in the Federal Register. And it makes the USA very unusual in recognising the realities of depreciation in a disposable world. And then they go and stuff it up.

The USA's financial crime regulator and FIU, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, FinCEN, has announced that it has "launched" the "Global Investigations Division" or (inevitably) "GID". It is being sold as being focussed on money laundering threats that originate abroad. But what is it really? And has FinCEN at last found its calling?

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The USA's Inland Revenue Service, the IRS, has reported "a steep drop" in identity fraud related cases in recent years but it is still a serious problem.

FCRO Subsection: 

Someone's got to pay for the wall! The Internal Revenue Service yesterday reiterated its warning that taxpayers may not be able to renew a current passport or obtain a new passport if they owe federal taxes. To avoid delays in travel plans, taxpayers need to take prompt action to resolve their tax issues. Here is the official notice (verbatim).

It's a story that has grabbed the headlines - a week after it was first published. One suspects that there was much fact-checking going on before a New York Times article that says US President Trump "participated..in outright fraud," a statement of such extraordinary bluntness that the mere fact that it appears in print is at least as shocking as the allegation itself. There are so many things to consider but in FinancialCrimeRiskOfficers.com, we are interested in a relatively narrow aspect of the story...

FCRO Subsection: 

US President Trump has been looking for a win: for almost a year, the Senate has frustrated his legislative ambitions. His Bill to make fundamental changes to the USA's income and company tax structure was expected to be the next big failure. Instead, it has sailed through both Houses, but its final signing into law will be delayed due to "a procedural issue," although the result of that is a formality in favour of it being passed. Once in place, it will mean the biggest revision of the US Tax Code for more than 30 years. Some of the changes mean that MLROs etc. overseas will need to revise their policies.

The advent of services such as Airbnb has , in some parts of the world, created an interesting effect: hotels are seeing that groups would often prefer to rent serviced apartments via websites than use several hotel rooms. This has had a cooling effect on rates at the same time as making hotels improve their service levels or it has started a race to the bottom where room-only rates are coupled with reducing quality of service. That's competition but, just as Uber has been lambasted for encouraging unregulated drivers to compete with highly regulated drivers, so Airbnb, etc., are facilitating unregulated accommodation whereas hotels are subject to increasing levels of regulation.

The following e-mail addresses are associated with potential phishing or drive-by malware attacks this morning:

davidibe718@gmail.com
J.Ryan@hud.ac.uk

CoNet Section: 

The US Department of Justice has charged four men from a district of California known as "the Inland Empire" with a range of tax offences that, it is alleged, generated substantial revenue by making false tax claims in the names of innocent individuals. It's time governments started doing effective KYC.

Case Summary: 

The music industry is littered with artists who end up poor because their managers ran away with the money they earned, or didn't properly account for it, or added in personal or corporate expenses as chargebacks. Luckily, none of the clients of the latest accountant / manager to get caught has ended up sleeping on a dirty mattress or not having enough to eat as has happened to others in the same position. But none of that is the most interesting thing about this case.

Type of conduct: 
Embezzlement

When India decided to remove, without warning, two large value notes from circulation and cancel their legality, Economists chugged their drinks and were delighted that India would be pulling back into some kind of order the unsustainable position that the vast majority of the money in circulation was held outside the banking sector, in cash. But behind the scenes, there was a shadow hunting through the depths of the data that the exercise generated. And now that shadow is found to have some large and sharp teeth.

First published in World Money Laundering Report - Volume 2, Number 9

EDITORIAL

The OECD is seemingly becoming more convinced than ever that its members have the right to dictate domestic fiscal policy to non-members and, increasingly, non-members are accepting what they appear to regard as inevitable.

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