Taxpayers, get out your wallets again. This Friday, an announced $1.2 billion settlement deal between Goldman Sachs and the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) allows some of the consequent payments to be written off as a tax deduction, likely worth $420 million. This settlement comes on the heels of another $17 billion tax-deductable agreement reached between Bank of America and the Justice Department just last week, building the case for U.S. PIRG's work to shift the burden of corporate wrongdoing away from the American public.
In 2010, the Securities and Exchange Commission specified that in another settlement, Goldman Sachs "shall not claim, assert, or apply for a tax deduction or tax credit with regard to any federal, state or local tax." By preventing the bank from writing off the settlement, the SEC ultimately saved taxpayers $192 million.
"For every dollar that Goldman Sachs receives in tax benefits from this settlement, it's a dollar that can't be used to pay down the national debt, improve government programs, or hold down tax rates," said U.S. PIRG's Michelle Surka.