When you think about financial services, you may imagine banks, brokers and mortgage lenders. In reality, though, the sector is much broader than that. Financial services encompass everything that has to do with money — including investing, saving and managing debt. It includes Wall Street and small community banks as well as nonprofits, large companies and the government.
Banking is the foundation of the industry, and it involves depositing and lending money to individuals. Its revenue comes from fees, commissions and spreads on interest rates between loans and deposits. It also focuses on credit services like credit cards, personal loans and mortgages.
Financial services companies offer investment services to help people grow their wealth through investments in securities, mutual funds and other assets. They also offer advisory services to help investors make informed decisions about their investments.
Insurance is a major part of the industry, and it helps people protect themselves against financial losses and unforeseen events. In addition to providing traditional life and health insurance, these firms also underwrite corporate acquisitions and mergers.
Other services in the financial sector include securities research, brokering and prime brokerage. These services help traders and investors find information about specific stocks and industries. They also help investors purchase and sell shares. Other financial services providers include investment advisers, treasury professionals and training & development specialists. They all work together to create an industry that is a vital component of the economy, impacting both businesses and individuals.