A well-functioning and efficient financial system (a network of institutions, instruments, and markets whose aim is to channel savings from savers to economic agents with investment opportunities) is required for the development of a healthy and complex economy.
Unfortunately, since the 1980s the financial system increasingly disconnected from the real economy it should serve. In 2017 the consequences of its mal-functioning are still too visible, with devastating impact on many citizens across the globe.
This book analyses how the financial system operates, explaining how banks, investment funds, regulators, financial centres, and Stock Exchanges (among others) work. Their main failures are also visited: the disconnections from the real economy that led to the Great Recession. The approach is mainly European, but institutions, markets and regulations in other regions are also commented.
The financial system faces in 2017 four potentially disruptive conditions that may radically reshape it: Brexit, FinTech, the rise of ethics and sustainability, and the entry of millenials into the market. This book suggests in which direction the financial system may evolve if this disruption materialises.