State-owned enterprises of the United States

federal government chartered and owned corporations are a separate set of corporations chartered and owned by the federal government, which operate to provide public services, but unlike the federal agencies, or the federal independent commissions, they have a separate legal personality from the federal government, providing the highest level of political independence. They sometimes receive federal budgetary appropriations, but some also have independent sources of revenue.

Federal-government-acquired corporations

The federal-government-acquired corporations are a separate set of corporations that were originally chartered and created by an entity other than the U.S. federal government, but that were, at some point, nationalised by the federal government. Most of these are corporations temporarily in possession of the government as a result of a seizure of property of a debtor to the government, such as a delinquent taxpayer; usually, these are awaiting liquidation at auction, and most are too small to note. However, there are also corporations that the federal government has nationalised to ensure the continued provision of an essential service or services, as well as nationalization of the northeastern freight railroads under Conrail.

List of federally owned enterprises

States and local governments

There exists a second level of sovereign government in the United States after the federal government: those of the several states of the United States. The vast majority of non-governmental corporations in the United States are chartered by the states of the United States. This includes most charitable corporations, non-profit corporations, and for-profit corporations. States also have the power to charter corporations that they own, control, or are responsible for the regulation and finance of. These include municipal corporations and state chartered and owned corporations. State government-chartered and -owned corporations are numerous and provide public services. Examples include North Dakota Mill and Elevator and South Dakota Public Broadcasting. Generally speaking, a statute passed by a state legislature specifically sets up a government-owned company in order to undertake a specific public purpose with public funds or public property. Lotteries in the United States are also run by government corporations, such as the Georgia Lottery Corporation and many others.

Tribal and indigenous governments

There also exists a third level of sovereign government in the United States: the sovereignty of the Native American tribal governments. As such, the Native American tribal governments have the power to charter corporations and undertake public undertakings that might benefit their tribal citizens, Native Americans being not only citizens of their particular tribes, but also citizens of their respective U.S. states, and of the United States. For example, a tribal council could establish a public service broadcaster along the lines of Ireland's Raidió Teilifís Éireann, partially fund it with a television license on tribal land, and make up the difference through advertising, thereby making it both a means of uniting the tribe and giving it a voice and a commercial venture by the tribe.
The Alaska Natives are particularly advanced in using their tribal sovereignty to incorporate corporations that are owned by and for the benefit of their tribal citizens and often compete in highly competitive economic sectors through the Alaska Native Regional Corporations. The Native American tribes in the 48 contiguous states often use their sovereignty and their ability to charter to compete using regulatory easements; for instance, Native American tribal corporations often trade in goods that are highly taxed in surrounding states, or engage in activities that surrounding states have forbidden, such as the operation of casinos or other gaming establishments. Most of these endeavors have proven very successful for Native American tribal sovereigns and their tribal corporations, bringing wealth into the hands of Native Americans.