Managing my financial journey
Managing my financial journey

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Week 1: The origins and development of financial services


Welcome to Managing my financial journey – a four-week course that looks at the UK financial services industry today, its origins and its contemporary challenges. The course also explores the way that financial firms are regulated and looks at how the rights and interests of consumers are protected.

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In this first week you will trace the evolution of financial services all the way from the sixteenth century right up to the modern day. There is a particular focus on developments in the last 30 years – including the 2007/08 global financial crisis, which saw parts of the industry in meltdown. Certainly the crisis has affected the structure and operations of the industry today – particularly in terms of how financial firms are now regulated.

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You will begin by tracing financial services back to their roots.

Note: ‘firms’ and ‘companies’

Throughout this course ‘firm’ is used as the collective term for all non-governmental institutions including companies (owned by shareholders), mutual organisations (owned by customers), partnerships and sole traders. This aligns with the use of the term by regulators in the UK. The specific terms ‘company’ or ‘mutual’, etc. are only used when the content relates to such types of firms or when the terms are used within the name of a type of financial product (e.g. company pension, company bond).

This course is presented with the kind support of True Potential LLP.

The True Potential Centre for the Public Understanding of Finance (True Potential PUFin) is a pioneering Centre of Excellence for research in the development of personal financial capabilities. The establishment and activities of True Potential PUFin have been made possible thanks to the generous support of True Potential LLP, which has committed to a five-year programme of financial support for the Centre totalling £1.4 million.

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