Significant internal control weaknesses remain in the preparation of the U.S. government's consolidated financial statements, according to a report from the Government Accountability Office.

The GAO said the weaknesses impair the government's ability to ensure that the consolidated financial statements are consistent with the underlying audited financial statements from the agencies involved. The weaknesses also make it hard to ensure the consolidated statements are properly balanced and conform to GAAP, the report noted.

The GAO found weaknesses in areas such as reporting unexpended budget balances, reporting operating cash, reconciling intragovernmental activity and balances, and preparing and auditing information in federal agencies' closing packages.

The report is nothing new, though. For the past 10 years, the GAO has said that material weaknesses in internal controls have kept it from expressing an opinion on the government's consolidated financial statements. The GAO has consistently reported that the government does not have adequate systems, controls and procedures in place.

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