Federal Reserve System
The Federal Reserve System is the central bank of the U.S., with goals including "shall maintain long run growth of the monetary and credit aggregates commensurate with the economy's long run potential to increase production, so as to promote effectively the goals of maximum employment, stable prices, and moderate long-term interest rates."
It is an independent entity within the government -- its decisions do not have to be OK'd by the president or Congress, and the Fed is not funded by Congress. However, board of govenor members are appointed by the president and approved by the Senate, and the Federal Reserve works to further government objectives, i.e. monetary policy.
This link goes to a frequently asked questions page of the Federal Reserve website.
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