Financial services are economic services provided by the finance industry, which encompasses a broad range of service sector firms that provide management of financial assets and liabilities, such as credit unions, banks, credit-card companies, insurance providers, investment funds, mortgage lenders and pensions. They also include the businesses that support these industries, such as credit-card networks and global payment systems.
A healthy financial services sector is essential for a strong economy, because it allows individuals to get loans to purchase anything from homes and cars to education and health care. It also helps millions save for retirement and other goals through a variety of savings options. It safeguards property and possessions through insurance policies, and it helps businesses grow by providing them with the necessary capital to expand or take on new opportunities.
The vast financial services industry includes a wide array of professionals and products, from investment firms to private equity and venture capital, and from credit-card companies to debt resolution services. It also includes credit-card network operators and global payments systems, as well as currency exchange and wire transfer services.
A career in financial services is highly rewarding for many people. A survey of professional satisfaction found that those in this field rated their job happiness between 9.6 and 10. And since many firms are global organizations, there are often ample opportunities to relocate around the world. However, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of a career in financial services before making the commitment.