The financial services industry is vast and varied, encompassing everything from direct savings and lending to investments, insurance, and the redistribution of risk. Its subsectors include banking, credit unions and building societies; deposit-taking institutions; mortgage banks and loan associations; pawnbrokers; credit-card companies; and global payment and transfer services such as Visa and Mastercard. It also includes investment funds; credit-card rating agencies; debt collection services; and the securities, commodities, and capital markets that facilitate stock, bond and derivatives trading.
A pillar of the economy, these services allow people to make more efficient and informed decisions about their money and future. This is why it’s crucial for them to continue to evolve in the face of changing consumer needs and regulations.
As financial services leaders look ahead to 2023 and beyond, there are many ways they can prepare their businesses for success in the new normal. One important strategy is focusing on women’s economic inclusion, including advocating for legal and policy reforms as well as supporting innovative services that empower women economically.
Careers in the financial services sector are incredibly rewarding, but can be stressful and demanding at times. It’s not uncommon for people in some roles to work between 16 and 20 hours a day, which can lead to burnout and a lack of work-life balance. However, the pay in this sector is very competitive and there are plenty of opportunities to advance within a company quickly.
One of the most significant advantages of financial services is that they enable companies to invest in new ideas and growth. Private equity and venture capital providers provide the initial funding for a wide range of startup companies, often in exchange for ownership stakes or profit participation. Additionally, angel investors are independently wealthy individuals who provide investment capital for small and mid-sized companies in return for a percentage of the company.
Other types of financial services include credit-card financing, factoring and forfaiting, hire purchase finance, and mutual fund management. These providers offer a variety of services that can help to increase domestic and foreign trade. They can even provide a means for the government to raise long-term funds in the capital market through the sale of bonds or securities.
The financial services industry is regulated by a number of independent agencies, including the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. These agencies are tasked with overseeing different financial institutions, ensuring that they’re acting responsibly and fairly to their clients. They also set the standards for how these companies operate, as well as enforcing compliance with the various laws and regulations that govern their industry.