Career options in banking
Banking is an important sector of UK financial services. Without banks, it would be difficult for individuals and businesses to manage their money, access loans, buy property, exchange currencies and many other activities that we use the banking system for! It is a large sector and is best understood organised when looked at in three core categories, as outlined below. Some banks do however operate across all three categories!
The primary activities of retail banks and building societies are offering access to credit, managing transactions and collecting deposits. These organisations operate on every high street, most have an online presence and offer telephone banking services too. They offer services and products to the general population to enable people to manage their daily finances.
Banks also operate services for business. Businesses sometimes need different types of products and services to those that the general population require, require quicker access to funds or need bespoke banking services arranged to manage their income and expenditure, which could be on a small or large scale and could be in various currencies. Many retail banks will offer business banking services. Corporate banking services can be operated through retail branches, but with staff dedicated to the business banking function.
Wholesale financial services are distinguished from the retail industry partly by the type of activity and volume of transactions undertaken, but mostly by the nature of the counterparties involved. Wholesale financial services bring together professional counterparties: clients are large companies, banks or governments and service providers include securities and derivatives firms, investment banks and insurers, as well as market infrastructure providers such as exchanges.
Find out more about the banking sector and career opportunities by downloading the banking factsheet.