-- Tax audits by the Internal Revenue Service on companies in the financial sector are undertaken far less frequently than those in other sectors such as manufacturing, agriculture and mining, according to a report from Syracuse University's Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse. The financial services sector -- which includes banks, insurance companies and brokerage firms -- received less than one-fifth of the audit frequency of other sectors during the years 2002 to 2004. The TRAC study examined the audit rates of companies in a number of sectors, each of which had at least $250 million in assets. "The very low attention being given to the financial sector by the IRS is particularly surprising in light of the leading role this industry plays in the country's economy, including the level of income subject to federal corporate income taxes," the report stated. However, the IRS contended that the TRAC data was flawed due to the fact that an audit of a financial concern would be reported as a manufacturing sector audit if the branch conducting the examination did not have a financial industry specialist on staff.
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