Government Accountability Office - GAO

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Government Accountability Office - GAO'

A department of the U.S. government that monitors and audits government spending. The General Accountability Office (GAO) tracks how the legislative and executive branches of the government use tax-payer dollars and then reports the findings directly to Congress. The Comptroller General serves as head of the GAO.

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Government Accountability Office - GAO'

The GAO serves as a sort of financial watchdog over government spending. It monitors the operating results, financial positions and accounting systems used by the various governmental agencies. The GAO also conducts routine audits on all branches of government.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Comptroller General

    A high-ranking accounting position in the U.S. government. Appointed ...
  2. Taxpayer Identification Number ...

    A number that is assigned to a tax paying businesses for identification ...
  3. Audit Risk

    The risk that an auditor will not discover errors or intentional ...
  4. Financial Statements

    Records that outline the financial activities of a business, ...
  5. Auditor

    An official whose job it is to carefully check the accuracy of ...
  6. Audit

    1. An unbiased examination and evaluation of the financial statements ...
Related Articles
  1. Economics

    Can state and local governments in the US run fiscal deficits?

    Discover why most state and local governments do not – or cannot – run fiscal deficits in the same manner as the U.S. federal government.
  2. Professionals

    Get A Job In Compliance

    If you're a stickler for rules, this could be a promising career path for you.
  3. Professionals

    On The Record: Communications With The Public

    NASD Rule 2211 can make or break your career as a registered principal.
  4. Professionals

    Investigating The Securities Police

    Learn about the history of FINRA and how this organization protects investors.
  5. Investing Basics

    Policing The Securities Market: An Overview Of The SEC

    Find out how this regulatory body protects the rights of investors.
  6. Options & Futures

    The Chinese Wall Protects Against Conflicts Of Interest

    After the crash of 1929, this barrier helped define ethical limits, but it did little to prevent fraud.
  7. Personal Finance

    Avoiding Online Investment Scams

    Find out how to spot internet fraud and protect your hard-earned money.
  8. Options & Futures

    Uncovering A Career In Forensic Accounting

    Does a job as a financial sleuth sound interesting to you? Dig in to learn more.
  9. Options & Futures

    Financial Regulators: Who They Are And What They Do

    Find out how these government agencies govern the financial markets.
  10. Economics

    The Economic and Social Effects of Corruption

    Corruption results in inefficiencies in the operations of emerging economies, and prevents such economies from reaching the maximum level of development.

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Portfolio Turnover

    A measure of how frequently assets within a fund are bought and sold by the managers. Portfolio turnover is calculated by ...
  2. Commercial Paper

    An unsecured, short-term debt instrument issued by a corporation, typically for the financing of accounts receivable, inventories ...
  3. Federal Funds Rate

    The interest rate at which a depository institution lends funds maintained at the Federal Reserve to another depository institution ...
  4. Fixed Asset

    A long-term tangible piece of property that a firm owns and uses in the production of its income and is not expected to be ...
  5. Break-Even Analysis

    An analysis to determine the point at which revenue received equals the costs associated with receiving the revenue. Break-even ...
  6. Key Performance Indicators - KPI

    A set of quantifiable measures that a company or industry uses to gauge or compare performance in terms of meeting their ...
Trading Center