Components of Financial System

A financial system refers to a system which enables the transfer of money between investors and borrowers. A financial system could be defined at an international, regional or organization level. The term “system” in “Financial System” indicates a group of complex and closely linked institutions, agents, procedures, markets, transactions, claims and liabilities within a economy.

Five Basic Components of Financial System

  • Financial Institutions
  • Financial Markets
  • Financial Instruments (Assets or Securities)
  • Financial Services
  • Money

Financial Institutions

Financial institutions facilitate smooth working of the financial system by making investors and borrowers meet. They mobilize the savings of investors either directly or indirectly via financial markets, by making use of different financial instruments as well as in the process using the services of numerous financial services providers.

They could be categorized into Regulatory, Intermediaries, Non-intermediaries and Others. They offer services to organizations looking for advises on different problems including restructuring to diversification strategies. They offer complete array of services to the organizations who want to raise funds from the markets and take care of financial assets for example deposits, securities, loans, etc.

Components of Financial System

Figure 1: Five Basic Components of Financial System

Financial Markets

A financial market is the place where financial assets are created or transferred. It can be broadly categorized into money markets and capital markets. Money market handles short-term financial assets (less than a year) whereas capital markets take care of those financial assets that have maturity period of more than a year. The key functions are:

1. Assist in creation and allocation of credit and liquidity.
2. Serve as intermediaries for mobilization of savings.
3. Help achieve balanced economic growth.
4. Offer financial convenience.

One more classification is possible: primary markets and secondary markets. Primary markets handles new issue of securities in contrast secondary markets take care of securities that are presently available in the stock market.

Financial markets catch the attention of investors and make it possible for companies to finance their operations and attain growth. Money markets make it possible for businesses to gain access to funds on a short term basis, while capital markets allow businesses to gain long-term funding to aid expansion. Without financial markets, borrowers would have problems finding lenders. Intermediaries like banks assist in this procedure. Banks take deposits from investors and lend money from this pool of deposited money to people who need loan. Banks commonly provide money in the form of loans.

Financial Instruments

This is an important component of financial system. The products which are traded in a financial market are financial assets, securities or other type of financial instruments. There is a wide range of securities in the markets since the needs of investors and credit seekers are different. They indicate a claim on the settlement of principal down the road or payment of a regular amount by means of interest or dividend. Equity shares, debentures, bonds, etc are some examples.

Watch a video on the model of the financial system

Financial Services

Financial services consist of services provided by Asset Management and Liability Management Companies. They help to get the necessary funds and also make sure that they are efficiently deployed. They assist to determine the financing combination and extend their professional services upto the stage of servicing of lenders. They help with borrowing, selling and purchasing securities, lending and investing, making and allowing payments and settlements and taking care of risk exposures in financial markets. These range from the leasing companies, mutual fund houses, merchant bankers, portfolio managers, bill discounting and acceptance houses.

The financial services sector offers a number of professional services like credit rating, venture capital financing, mutual funds, merchant banking, depository services, book building, etc. Financial institutions and financial markets help in the working of the financial system by means of financial instruments. To be able to carry out the jobs given, they need several services of financial nature. Therefore, Financial services are considered as the 4th major component of the financial system.


Money is understood to be anything that is accepted for payment of products and services or for the repayment of debt. It is a medium of exchange and acts as a store of value.


  1. Mohamed Salah says

    very nice summary of the financial system.
    but if it includes a real example of the life it will be awesome

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