Bank of North Dakota

The Bank of North Dakota (BND) is a state-owned, state-run financial institution based in Bismarck, North Dakota. It is the only government-owned general-service bank in the United States.[2][3]

Bank of North Dakota
State owned
Financial services
Founded1919 (1919) in Bismarck, North Dakota
Area served
North Dakota
US$136.2 million[1] (2016)
Total assetsUS$7.295 billion (2016)
OwnerGovernment of North Dakota


Under state law, the bank is the State of North Dakota doing business as the Bank of North Dakota.[4] The state and its agencies are required to place their funds in the bank, but local governments are not required to do so.


Other entities may also open accounts at the Bank; however, BND offers fewer retail services than other institutions, and it has only one office. These limit its competitiveness in consumer banking.[5] The bank does have an account with the Federal Reserve Bank, but deposits are not insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, instead being guaranteed by the general fund of the state of North Dakota itself and the taxpayers of the state.[5] BND also guarantees student loans (through its Student Loans of North Dakota division), business development loans, and state and municipal bonds.[5]


The Bank of North Dakota was established by legislative action in 1919 to promote agriculture, commerce and industry in North Dakota.[2] Though initially conceived by populists in the Non-Partisan League, or NPL, as a credit union-style institution to free the farmers of the state from predatory lenders, the bank's functions were largely blocked by out-of-state financial actors refusing to buy the bonds the bank issued to finance its lending, lending that would have provided competition to the commercial banks.[6] The business-backed Independent Voters Association then pursued shutting down the bank politically.[6] The recall of NPL Governor Lynn Frazier effectively ended the initial plan, with BND taking a more conservative central banking role in state finance.

The current president and CEO is Eric Hardmeyer. The bank is overseen by the North Dakota Industrial Commission, which is composed of the Governor, Attorney General, and the Agriculture Commissioner (formerly the Agriculture and Labor Commissioner) of North Dakota.[7]


1F.W. Cathro1919
2J. R. Waters19201921
3G.R. Green19221929
4C.F. Mudgett19301932
5R.M. Stangler19331936
6F.A. Vogel19371944
7H.C. Bowers19451956
8T.W. Sette19571961
9G.M. Thompson19621968
10H.L. Thorndal19691986
11Joseph Lamb19861992
12John Hoeven19932000
13Eric Hardmeyer2001present


  1. "Annual report 2016" (PDF). Bank of North Dakota. Retrieved 19 July 2017.
  2. "Home". Bank of North Dakota.
  3. Limited-service governmental or quasi-governmental banks include the Federal Reserve Banks, the Federal Financing Bank and the California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank.
  4. The State of North Dakota, d/b/a Bank of North Dakota v. Merchants National Bank and Trust Company; Red River National Bank and Trust Company; Jamestown National Bank; Union National Bank; Wahpeton National Bank, 634 F.2d 368 (8th Cir. Aug. 6, 1980).
  5. "Bank of North Dakota FAQ" (PDF). Bank of North Dakota. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 17, 2011. Retrieved February 7, 2012.
  6. "Bank of North Dakota". Prairie Public Broadcasting via YouTube. Retrieved 11 October 2013.
  7. "Home page for ND Industrial Commission".
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