The Federal Reserve System is the central bank of the United States. As the nation's central bank, it performs five key functions in the public interest to promote the health of the U.S. economy and the stability of the U.S. financial system.
The Federal Reserve advances supervision, community reinvestment, and research to improve understanding of the impacts of financial services policies and practices on consumers and communities.
The Federal Reserve promotes the safety and soundness of individual financial institutions and monitors their impact on the financial system as a whole.
Though Congress specifies the goals for monetary policy, it established the Federal Reserve as an independent agency to ensure that its decisions are based on facts and objective analysis and serve the best interests of all Americans.
The Federal Reserve Act of 1913 called for a central banking system with a central governing Board and a decentralized operating structure of multiple Reserve Banks. This hybrid structure is still in place today.
The Federal Reserve monitors financial system risks and engages at home and abroad to help ensure the system supports a healthy economy for U.S. households, communities, and businesses.
One part of the Fed's dual mandate is price stability. Price stability means that inflation remains low and stable over the longer run.
The Federal Reserve works to promote a safe, efficient, and accessible system for U.S. dollar transactions.
Economic downturns in American history have ranged from mild recessions to severe depressions.
The Federal Reserve System was established in 1913 in reaction to a history of financial instability and other economic challenges.