The Bank of Canada is the nation's central bank. It is not a commercial bank and does not offer banking services to the public. Instead, it has responsibilities for Canada's monetary policy, bank notes, financial system, and funds management. Its principal role, as defined in the Bank of Canada Act, is "to promote the economic and financial welfare of Canada." The Bank was founded in 1934 as a privately owned corporation. In 1938, it became a Crown corporation belonging to the federal government. Since that time, the Minister of Finance has held the entire share capital issued by the Bank. Ultimately, the Bank is owned by the people of Canada. The Bank is not a government department and conducts its activities with considerable independence compared with most other federal institutions (Source: Bank of Canada).