Financial services is a broad term that includes banking, insurance, investment and venture capital. The financial services industry is a global business with many different players and moving parts, and it fuels economic growth worldwide.
In the United States, the financial services industry is largely governed by federal and state regulations and supervisory bodies. These agencies enforce consumer protection laws, such as limits on credit card interest rates and checking account overdraft fees.
There are a wide range of careers in the financial services industry, from accountants and economists to insurance underwriters and mortgage brokers. You can also work in the public sector or in a non-profit organization.
Depending on the type of job you want, you may need a degree or certificate. But for many jobs, a high school diploma or GED is enough to get you started.
A career in the financial services industry can be very rewarding. You can build relationships with people, develop skills in negotiation and decision making, and use your analytical abilities to help businesses grow and succeed.
You can also use your skills to help people who need your support. For example, you might offer financial counseling to those struggling with debt or who are trying to save for retirement.
When you work in the financial services industry, your responsibilities are to make sure that customers have what they need, and to help them achieve their goals. This means working to understand what their needs are at each stage of their lives, and creating products that fit those specific goals.
This can involve analyzing your customer’s spending habits and engagement with other products to anticipate major life moments that will require financial support, such as marriage or a move out of state. You can then develop a product to address these needs in the right time frame.
There are five main areas of the financial services industry: banks, asset management, insurance, venture capital and private equity. Each of these sectors employs millions of workers and fuels economic growth around the world.
The financial services industry is regulated by national and international governments to foster trust between providers and consumers. Its oversight includes licensing and regulation, inspections, and investigation of complaints.
Companies within the financial services industry must comply with government regulations, which can be complex and complicated. However, these rules can be difficult to implement, as they sometimes fail to cover new activities or wrongdoing in the industry.
In addition to the regulatory process, financial service companies must meet other business and operational requirements. This can include ensuring that the company is financially sound and has a sufficient capital base.
Another requirement is adherence to ethical standards and corporate governance. These standards are designed to protect investors, ensure fair treatment of shareholders and employees, and ensure that companies operate in a responsible manner.
Some of these standards are voluntary, such as a code of ethics for financial professionals. Others are mandated by law, such as the Securities and Exchange Commission’s rules for public companies.