Money Laundering

The Volume of Currency Transaction Reports Filed Can and Should Be Reduced Gao ID: T-GGD-94-113 March 15, 1994

The Bank Secrecy Act requires banks and other financial institutions to file a currency transaction report for each transaction involving more than $10,000 in cash. The number of reports filed has been steadily increasing--as of April 1993 nearly 50 million reports had been filed, and this figure could double in the next three years. Although these reports are extremely useful in detecting and prosecuting money laundering, GAO concludes that the volume of filings could be substantially reduced without jeopardizing law enforcement. In fact, the large volume of reports has made analysis difficult, expensive, and time-consuming. Many of the reports being filed are of routine business transactions that could have been exempted from being reported. GAO supports the provisions contained in S. 1664 that would encourage greater use of exemptions for routine transactions with no law enforcement value.

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