Financial services are the industry that handles the making, investment and management of money for individuals and businesses. This includes everything from trading shares on the stock market to helping people save for a rainy day through insurance policies. It also encompasses credit card networks, debt resolution companies and global payment systems like Visa and MasterCard.
The strength of a country’s financial sector is vital to its economy as a whole. When it is healthy, consumers earn more, feel more confident and are in a position to spend more and invest more. When it is weak, there is less money to go around, and the economy suffers.
Banks are the foundation of financial services, and earn money primarily from interest on loans and deposits. They can also earn revenue from fees, commissions and other methods including the spread of interest rates between loans and deposit accounts. The presence of financial services also enables consumer products like hire purchase finance and mutual funds to be available at reasonable rates.
A career in financial services can be highly lucrative, especially for those who have the right connections. Unlike some other industries, many financial firms rely on aptitude over tenure and promote internally, giving candidates the opportunity to learn new skills and advance quickly. However, the high-stress nature of the jobs can be draining and lead to burnout. The ability to work well under pressure and stay organized is essential to success in this industry.