When it comes to financial services, the term is broadly defined as “everything that touches money.” That encompasses not only the depository institutions and providers of investment products like banks, building societies and mortgage companies; credit and financing organizations; insurance and pension funds; and all forms of financial intermediation. It also includes the critical market utilities and other support services.
These include clearinghouses, securities exchanges and commodity exchanges; payment and money transmission services; information and data processing services for the financial industry; and financial research (including portfolio management and investment consulting). It also includes debt and equity underwriting, financial advisory and intermediation services (like mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and venture capital), and structured finance.
Some of these are standalone companies, but many are part of large financial conglomerates that offer a wide range of products and services. For example, some big banks offer insurance and brokerage services through their own subsidiaries. This is an effort to offer a more comprehensive product offering, which helps them earn more revenue.
Before you start your search for a job in financial services, assess your goals and needs. For example, do you need a onetime conversation with a financial advisor or ongoing advice and wealth management? This will help you narrow down your options. In addition, it’s a good idea to have some mentorship experience under your belt before you seek a position in this industry. According to Duitch, this will help you build your reputation and gain a solid network that can pave the way for your career.