Cyclopedia of Congressional Budget Law

Government-Sponsored Enterprise (GSE)


A government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) is a fully privately-owned corporations that still serves a policy purposes for the government, and designed by Congress. These corporations receive federal charters and facilitate the flow of private sector financing into targeted sectors of the economy, and in doing so reduct the cost of credit for borrowers in those sectors, such as housing or agriculture.  

GAO Glossary of Terms and Definition (September 2005)

Government-Sponsored Enterprise (GSE)

A privately owned and operated federally chartered financial institution that facilitates the flow of investment funds to specific economic sectors. GSEs, acting as financial intermediaries, provide these sectors access to national capital markets.

The activities of GSEs are not included in the federal budget’s totals because they are classified as private entities. However, because of their relationship to the government, detailed statements of financial operations and conditions are presented as supplementary information in the budget document. For the purposes of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, as amended (2 U.S.C. § 622(8)), an entity must meet certain criteria to qualify as a GSE. (For distinctions, see Mixed-Ownership Government CorporationOff-BudgetWholly-Owned Government Corporation.)

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GAO: Government-Sponsored Enterprises: The Government’s Exposure To Risk (Aug. 15, 1990) (GAO Rep. GAO/GGD-90-97)

U.S. Dept. of the Treasury, Report of the Secretary of the Treasury on Government-Sponsored Enterprises (May 31,1990)


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