A financial services industry is vital to any economy. It allows individuals to spend their hard-earned money wisely, saving for things like mortgages, education, and vehicles, while safeguarding against risk through insurance. And it helps businesses grow and create jobs through loans for expansion and investment capital.
Financial services include banks, credit unions, private equity firms and venture capitalists, as well as accounting and tax filing services, currency exchanges, and wire transfer and credit card networks and machines. It also includes debt resolution services, global payment providers such as Visa and Mastercard, and commodity and derivatives exchanges.
While a healthy financial services sector is necessary to keep economies functioning, it’s also at a crossroads. Consumers, conditioned by their experiences in other realms of digital life, now expect hyper-personalized and connected financial experiences no matter the channel or point of interaction. This puts FIs at a disadvantage against nimble FinTech and Big Tech competitors that can offer a more seamless experience with a single platform or app.
In addition, the tertiary or service sector, which includes the financial services industry, contributes more to a country’s GDP than its primary and secondary sectors combined. It provides employment to millions of people and is a key indicator of a developed economy.