Financial services are crucial to the functioning of an economy. They enable businesses to maximize their profits, provide liquidity in the marketplace, and help individuals to acquire consumer goods and services.
Financial services include banks, insurance companies, and other financial institutions. Each institution offers different services depending on its organizational structure and regulatory requirements.
Commercial banks are financial institutions that offer credit facilities, underwrite equity for the public sector, and advise companies on mergers and takeovers. Community banks and regional banks often seek private and public capital.
Insurance provides financial protection to people from business and natural calamities. Insurance companies also cover risks involved in producing and distributing goods and services. Other insurance types include life insurance, health insurance, and property insurance.
Financial service providers include investment firms, insurance companies, and credit card and mortgage service companies. These providers channel cash from savers to borrowers. By making loans and selling bonds, they can help borrowers raise funds. However, they take on the risk of borrowers not paying.
Investing is the process of creating a value from the products and services that producers sell. The financial industry is highly dependent on IT systems. Some financial services companies are nonprofits, while others are for-profit ventures.
Many community-based nonprofits offer money management advice to individuals. Wealth management firms and family offices handle small groups of wealthy individuals.
Some jobs in the financial services sector require a degree. While an undergraduate degree in finance or a major in business administration with a finance focus is often a good start, a graduate certificate can deepen your knowledge of the financial industry.