Financial services are essential to a country’s economic stability. They ensure that people have the freedom to save and reinvest their money for growth. These include banking and insurance services, as well as a host of other critical financial utilities.
Banks and other financial institutions earn their revenue by granting loans, issuing credit cards, accepting deposits and providing other banking services to their clients. Some of these services are tailored to businesses, while others are more specific to individuals.
Investment companies and brokerages provide access to a wide range of investments, such as stocks, bonds and mutual funds. They also help investors manage their assets, including their wealth and retirement savings.
Insurance providers protect people’s assets against death, illness and accident. This helps ensure that their loved ones are cared for and their business is safe.
Accounting professionals help small businesses keep proper accounting records and tax information accurate. They also assist companies in obtaining the proper permits and licenses.
A strong financial services sector promotes a country’s economic growth, while a failing system can cause a decline in confidence and a lack of purchasing power for consumers. These services can be delivered by thousands of depository institutions, providers of investment products, insurance companies and other credit and financing organizations.
Regulatory bodies oversee various financial industries, uphold transparency and protect consumers from unfair practices. Independent agencies such as the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) play an important role in ensuring that consumers receive the best possible services.