Stockbrokers are companies or individuals who buy and sell securities on behalf of another individual or company. They earn their living by charging a commission. They may execute orders only or may additionally offer advice on which financial products to buy. A few are also involved in other activities such as corporate finance. Personal initiative is usually required to find vacancies.

All the UK retail banks have stock broking arms. Other major players: Brewer Dolphin, Cantor Fitzgerald, Charles Stanley, Hargreaves Landsdown, Hoare Govett, Seymour Pierce, Smith & Williamson and Williams de Broe.

Fund management

Fund Management or Asset Management Divisions invest money on behalf of their clients, who may be pension fund, insurance companies or unit trusts. They buy (mainly) financial products with a view to making the value of the funds grow over the long term.

There are two main types of fund: managed funds and index trackers. In the former case, judgement is used to buy and sell at a profit; in the latter, the fun is operated to reflect closely the make up of an index, such as the FTSE 100. Different funds have associated with them various degrees of risk and corresponding potentials for growth.

Managers make decisions on investments in equities, bonds, commodities, property and derivatives, depending on the clients' tolerance of risk. Analysts scrutinise market sectors and company results, meet with companies' senior management to discuss their strategy, and write reports on their conclusions.