Financial industry jobs are focused in one of seven very broad sectors. These include a variety of banking jobs and jobs that tend to work closely with the banking industry such as the accounting, investment, and regulatory industries. Other financial industry jobs service a variety of commercial interests including the insurance and legal sectors and non-bank financial institutions like foreign exchange services and credit unions. While many types of financial industry jobs within these sectors require high levels of formal education, others such as accounting and brokerage services can be entered with a vocational education, and advancement is often completed through licensing and increasing one's level of specialized expertise.
While any financial industry career is largely a service job that does not deal with any physical product, it is one of the highest-paying service industries in which to establish a career. This is because financial industry jobs focus on the management and investment of money within the confines of statutory, or international, and regulatory, or national, and local laws. The control of money as well as the valuation of assets, products, and services, as well as the laws regarding its transfer are universal to almost every business in one form or another. This makes financial industry jobs one of the widest arenas of employment world wide.
As of 2007, financial sector pretax profits in the US alone accounted for 27% of all corporate profits. This growth in financial industry jobs was seen as largely being fueled by deregulation and technological innovation that allowed for more and more interconnected financial services by multinational corporations. Some of the highest paying areas of this financial industry work are as financial services and commodities brokers, financial managers in banks, government or investment firms, and financial analysts at the same organizations. On a more local level, financial industry job opportunities can also be lucrative for personal financial advisers and loan officers for small and regional banks. Other financial industry careers that tend to take on a consulting role to many types of financial institutions include insurance underwriters and careers that focus heavily on mathematical models and statistics such as actuaries, accountants, and auditors.
When most people think of the financial industry, the most common type of jobs that come to mind are those in banking or investment firms. But several other very large segments of the economy are also a focus of financial industry jobs, and these include work for credit card issuers, mortgage companies, and research firms focused on risk management and the rating of various transactions and agencies. Government and legal agencies also play a key role in hiring for financial industry jobs through such organizations as the Federal Reserve System (Fed) in the US and Financial Services Authority (FSA) in the UK.