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The University of Southampton
Economic, Social and Political Sciences

Retail banking

Retail banking covers the activities of the main high street banks that provide financial services to individuals and small to medium sized businesses. Retail banks traditionally make their profits by lending to individuals and businesses, and by charging fees for financial services. Competition is fierce in this industry, but it is a fast-paced, dynamic, customer facing role.

Retail Banking


There are many roles within a retail bank or the retail banking arm of a large ‘universal’ bank. Roles include: general management, branch management, compliance, risk management, finance, and marketing. Many banks offer a graduate scheme typically lasting between 1-3 years; these schemes allow graduates to gain a rounded understanding of all elements of the bank before taking up a permanent position.

Skills required:

Retail Banking

Things to Consider:

Rotational schemes allow graduates to get a taste for the entire bank and not just be limited to one area.

Work is not just limited to London; there are positions all over the UK, many of which offer a very competitive salary in a customer-facing and dynamic work environment.

There is also the opportunity to use the skills  gained from an economics degree or modules to solve real world business problems.

Although it is important to consider that jobs in this sector are very competitive.  It can be worth getting involved in extra-curricular activities and getting work experience to stand out from the crowd.

Hours can also be long and work could be stressful.

Useful Links:

The University cannot be held responsible for external content

The Job Crowd- Retail Banking Graduate Interview Questions and Tips

TargetJobs- Retail Banking

Inside Careers- Retail Banking

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Photo of Jamelia Harris
The students, staff and academic programme all make it worthwhile; and I would definitely recommend it to anyone.
Jamelia Harris , BSc Economics with Actuarial Science
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