Close this search box.

Table of Contents

National Bank


A National Bank is a financial institution that operates under government regulation, providing a range of services, including safeguarding national financial stability. Its primary functions include implementing monetary policies, managing currency reserves, and regulating the country’s money supply. These banks may also issue national currency and serve as the government’s fiscal agent.


In the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA), the phonetics of the keyword “National Bank” would be:ˈnæʃənəl bæŋk

Key Takeaways


Three Main Takeaways about National Bank:

  1. Central Financial Institution: National Banks are the central financial institutions of a country, responsible for implementing monetary policies, regulating other banks, and maintaining financial stability for the nation.
  2. Issuing Currency: One of the main responsibilities of a National Bank is to issue the national currency and, in some cases, regulate its exchange rates with other currencies. They have the authority to control the money supply, influencing interest rates and inflation rates.
  3. Supporting Economic Growth: National Banks help promote economic stability and growth by facilitating the government’s banking activities, managing public debt, and offering a range of financial services to commercial banks.


The term National Bank is important in business and finance because it refers to a financial institution established and regulated by the government of a country to provide a range of critical monetary services. These services include managing the country’s money supply, overseeing the national currency, implementing monetary policy, lending funds to commercial banks at interest, and acting as a lender of last resort during financial crises. National banks play a vital role in maintaining the stability of a country’s financial system, promoting economic growth, and safeguarding overall financial well-being. Additionally, they work toward controlling inflation, ensuring smooth and secure financial transactions, and fostering investor confidence by regulating the financial markets, thereby contributing to national economic development.


The primary purpose of a national bank is to regulate and support the nation’s financial and monetary stability. It operates under the guidance and control of the central regulatory authority and plays a vital role in the country’s economy. By implementing monetary policies, managing foreign reserves, setting interest rates, and overseeing the issuing and circulation of the national currency, a national bank becomes an essential instrument for governments to promote economic growth, manage inflation, stabilize exchange rates, and support employment. Furthermore, national banks are entrusted with supervisory responsibilities to ensure the soundness of the nation’s financial system. They monitor and regulate commercial banks and financial institutions to prevent fraud, systemic risks, and excessive volatility. Through their lending operations to other banks at predefined interest rates, national banks can indirectly control the nation’s money supply and liquidity. Additionally, they serve as the government’s banking agent, assisting in the collection of tax revenues, disbursement of funds, and management of public debt obligations. By fulfilling these crucial functions, national banks contribute significantly to the overall fiscal discipline, good governance, and long-term economic prospects.


1. The Federal Reserve Bank (United States): Established in 1913, the Federal Reserve Bank is the central banking system of the United States. Its main responsibilities include monitoring and regulating the U.S. monetary policy, maintaining financial stability, supervising and regulating banks, and providing banking services to government institutions. The Federal Reserve also plays a critical role in overseeing the issuance of U.S. currency and setting benchmark interest rates. 2. Deutsche Bundesbank (Germany): The Deutsche Bundesbank is the central banking system of Germany and has been operating since 1957, following the creation of the European Monetary Institute in 1998. Its primary roles include implementing the European Central Bank’s monetary policy, ensuring the stability of the German financial system, and supervising the country’s banks. The Bundesbank is also responsible for managing Germany’s foreign currency reserves and issuing domestic currency. 3. Bank of England (United Kingdom): Founded in 1694, the Bank of England is the central bank of the United Kingdom, and its primary responsibility is to maintain stability and public confidence in the currency and financial system of the UK. The Bank of England manages the UK’s monetary policy, sets benchmark interest rates, oversees the issuance of the British pound, and supervises other banks operating within the country. It also acts as the government’s banker, managing the government’s borrowing and lending activities.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is a National Bank?
A National Bank is a financial institution that is chartered and regulated by the national government, primarily responsible for implementing monetary policy, issuing legal tender, and providing financial services to the government and the general public.
What are the primary functions of a National Bank?
The primary functions of a National Bank include issuing and regulating currency, implementing monetary policies, serving as a lender of last resort to commercial banks, managing foreign exchange reserves, promoting financial stability, and acting as a financial advisor to the government.
Are National Banks the same as Central Banks?
Yes, National Banks and Central Banks are often used interchangeably. Both refer to a country’s main financial institution that manages monetary policies, controls money supply, and safeguards financial stability.
How do National Banks regulate the economy?
National Banks regulate the economy by controlling the money supply and adjusting key interest rates. They also influence fiscal policies by providing financial guidance to governments, ensuring economic stability and growth.
What is the role of a National Bank in issuing currency?
A National Bank is responsible for issuing the country’s legal tender, ensuring that an adequate and stable supply of currency is continuously available for use by businesses and individuals.
Can private individuals open accounts in a National Bank?
Typically, National Banks focus on providing financial services to the government and commercial banks, rather than offering banking services to individuals. However, in some countries, National Banks may offer certain services directly to the public.
How does a National Bank influence interest rates?
A National Bank sets and adjusts key policy interest rates that affect the cost of borrowing and lending within the country. By increasing or decreasing these rates, National Banks can encourage or discourage borrowing, eventually influencing economic growth and inflation.
Which institutions are subject to the regulation of a National Bank?
National Banks regulate and oversee the operations of commercial banks, financial institutions, and other non-bank financial intermediaries within the country to ensure financial stability and compliance with regulations.
What is the relationship between a National Bank and the government?
National Banks operate independently but cooperate closely with the government. The government appoints members of the bank’s leadership, while the bank serves as the government’s financial advisor and primary fiscal agent.
Can a National Bank go bankrupt?
National Banks, as institutions operating at the sovereign level, have the unique ability to manage the money supply and are considered risk-free creditors. In principle, a National Bank is not likely to go bankrupt, as it can issue currency to meet its obligations. However, poor financial management and extreme economic conditions could lead to a loss of confidence in a country’s currency, resulting in a crisis.

Related Finance Terms

  • Central Banking System
  • Monetary Policy
  • Bank Reserves
  • Bank Regulation
  • Interest Rates

Sources for More Information

About Our Editorial Process

At Due, we are dedicated to providing simple money and retirement advice that can make a big impact in your life. Our team closely follows market shifts and deeply understands how to build REAL wealth. All of our articles undergo thorough editing and review by financial experts, ensuring you get reliable and credible money advice.

We partner with leading publications, such as Nasdaq, The Globe and Mail, Entrepreneur, and more, to provide insights on retirement, current markets, and more.

We also host a financial glossary of over 7000 money/investing terms to help you learn more about how to take control of your finances.

View our editorial process

About Our Journalists

Our journalists are not just trusted, certified financial advisers. They are experienced and leading influencers in the financial realm, trusted by millions to provide advice about money. We handpick the best of the best, so you get advice from real experts. Our goal is to educate and inform, NOT to be a ‘stock-picker’ or ‘market-caller.’ 

Why listen to what we have to say?

While Due does not know how to predict the market in the short-term, our team of experts DOES know how you can make smart financial decisions to plan for retirement in the long-term.

View our expert review board

About Due

Due makes it easier to retire on your terms. We give you a realistic view on exactly where you’re at financially so when you retire you know how much money you’ll get each month. Get started today.

Due Fact-Checking Standards and Processes

To ensure we’re putting out the highest content standards, we sought out the help of certified financial experts and accredited individuals to verify our advice. We also rely on them for the most up to date information and data to make sure our in-depth research has the facts right, for today… Not yesterday. Our financial expert review board allows our readers to not only trust the information they are reading but to act on it as well. Most of our authors are CFP (Certified Financial Planners) or CRPC (Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor) certified and all have college degrees. Learn more about annuities, retirement advice and take the correct steps towards financial freedom and knowing exactly where you stand today. Learn everything about our top-notch financial expert reviews below… Learn More