When you think of financial services, you probably think of banks, brokers and mortgage lenders. But the industry is a lot bigger than that, encompassing everything from debt and equity financing to investment services, banking and insurance. It provides individuals, small businesses and even large corporations with the money they need to grow and thrive. A healthy financial services sector is a boon to the economy, providing people with the loans they need for home and auto purchases and helping them save for retirement and other future goals.
In addition, it enables companies to invest in themselves, and creates jobs in the process. And it allows individuals to protect their property, health and other assets through insurance policies. Financial services also allow investors to make more money from their investments, by investing in companies or tying up their savings in stocks and bonds.
A healthy financial services sector is a boon for the economy, providing people with the loans they needs for home and auto purchases and enabling companies to invest in themselves and create jobs. It also enables individuals to safeguard their property, health and other assets through insurance and by saving for retirement or other future goals.
The definition of financial services is broad, including everything from the clearing and settlement of payment transactions to the provision of credit cards. It also includes the custody and brokerage of securities, the administration of pension funds, and the operation of stock exchanges and derivative markets.
Its growth has been fueled by technological advances and changes in the economic environment. The Internet has changed the way bankers do business by allowing clients to check their accounts online at any time, and by making it easier for companies to pay employees through direct deposit. Computer technology has also changed the operations of the securities industry by automating many functions and allowing brokers to provide customers with quotes quickly. And it has facilitated the creation of financial services conglomerates that offer investment, banking and insurance products to their clients.
The types of companies that are considered to be part of the financial services industry vary by country, but can include central banks; depository institutions like commercial and savings banks; credit unions and cooperatives; building societies and mortgage banks; and credit-card issuers. It can also include insurance and pension funds, reinsurance companies, and investment firms. It can even include financial intermediation companies such as brokers and agents, and leasing or hire purchase companies.
A career in financial services requires a combination of skills that can include accounting, data analysis, project management and teamwork. Employers look for candidates who are quick-thinking, intelligent and good communicators. They are looking for candidates who will be able to work in a fast-paced, challenging and rewarding environment. In addition, they are looking for candidates who have a strong desire to succeed and be able to meet the challenges that come with the job. The salary range in this field is quite varied, depending on the position and the level of experience.