Complying with the current federal tax code costs American taxpayers at least $100 billion annually, and lost economic efficiency associated with the tax system may top half a trillion dollars, auditors for the Government Accountability Office told Congress.

In a new report likely to add fuel to campaign for an easy-to-administer national consumption tax, the GAO said that the "lowest available estimates" of the cost of complying with federal income, payroll and excise taxes is $107 billion -- 1 percent of the nation's total gross domestic product. Other studies suggest compliance costs may be 50 percent higher than these estimates, the GAO told Congress.

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