Financial services are a critical part of the functioning of a nation’s economy. They ensure that money is allocated to all sectors in a fair manner. These services also enable people to save money and acquire consumer goods.
Financial services include financial products such as stocks, bonds, real estate, and insurance. Generally, these are bought and sold on behalf of a company or individual. Moreover, a person may apply for a loan or borrow from a bank.
Insurance is another major subsector of the financial services industry. Insurance companies offer protection from injury and property damage. It is also used to cover large unforeseen expenses.
Investment is another important part of the financial services industry. In addition to the financial good, which includes securities, loans, and bonds, there are also investment products, such as equity funds, hedge funds, retirement planning, and advisory services. Moreover, there are other financial utilities, such as payment systems, which settle accounts through credit cards and debit cards.
Financial services have become highly dependent on information technology. Hence, there has been a lot of regulation and oversight on the industry. Government laws and regulations are designed to protect consumers. However, they cannot always catch fraudulent behavior. Often, the regulatory efforts are only a reaction to a negative economic situation. This can limit the ability of regulators to adequately monitor new activities.
Since the financial services industry is so big, it can be a challenge to decide where you want to begin your career. You can start off in an entry-level position, building your skills as you go along. Then, you can consider a more responsible role that might lead to higher salary. On the other hand, if you want to build a portfolio of assets, you can consider becoming an investment portfolio manager.
Another way to break into the financial services industry is to develop a network. By doing so, you can vouch for your character and skills. That can help you land an interview or job. If you have a job that involves a specific area, such as a broker, you could be a valuable resource for your employer.
Regardless of which financial services sector you choose, you will need a broad set of skills to succeed. Moreover, a degree is not always required. Most of the financial services jobs require a combination of hard and soft skills. A person may need to spend sixteen to twenty hours a day working, so a work-life balance is not always possible. But, if you have a passion for finance, there are plenty of opportunities for you.
There are also many community-based nonprofits that offer free counseling and advice on money management. While you can work for any of these organizations, some focus on one particular category. For example, the United States has several agencies, including the Financial Services Authority (FSA), the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA), and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Moreover, some financial services industries are not for-profit. In this case, you might be able to use your own funds to pay for financial services.