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F

Federal Reserve

The Central Bank of the United States; call it “the Fed” for short. The Fed sets interest rate policy (also called monetary policy) in the country. Its mission is to promote both full employment and low inflation, two often contradictory goals. In order to shield the Fed from short-term political influence, its members are appointed by the executive branch—yep, POTUS himself. The current chair (or “head”) of the Federal Reserve is Janet Yellen, the first woman ever to hold the position. (See also: Monetary Policy)

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