Banking and Financial Services

Module description

*Please note this module descriptor is for the 21/22 academic year*


Banks and financial services enable end-providers (lenders and savers) and end-users (borrowers and spenders) of financial claims to transact without the need for them to do so directly. This module sets out to examine the process of financial intermediation and the financial services through which intermediation takes place. Theoretical and applied concepts are used to provide an understanding of the functioning of banks and financial services and of their size and economic significance. There are no pre- or co-requisites but prior knowledge in introductory finance would be an advantage.

Additional Information:


Students are presented with up-to-date examples from various international markets, so they acquire knowledge on banking and financial services that can be applied across a number of countries.

External Engagement

We have number of guest speakers in this module. Last year this included the South West Agent of Bank of England, the Head and Deputy Head of Corporate Banking at HSBC Bank Plc.


Students develop several transferable skills in this module, such as team-working, numeracy, research and discursive and problem-solving skills.


All of the resources for this module are available through the ELE (Exeter Learning Environment).

Full module specification

Module title:Banking and Financial Services
Module code:BEAM033
Module level:M
Academic year:2021/2
Module lecturers:
  • Dr Angela Christidis - Convenor
Module credit:15
ECTS value:






Duration of module: Duration (weeks) - term 2:


Duration (weeks) - term 3:


Module aims

The aim of the module is to introduce you to the principles and mechanisms of commercial banking, general insurance, life insurance, pension funds and mutual funds. You will also understand the models of money supply, interest rates and flow of funds as the primary conduit through which monetary policy actions by the central bank take place. International examples will be covered, including up-to-date financial news in relevant financial publications. You will also critically appraise bank-based financial crises, with a particular focus on the recent financial crisis.

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Discriminate, and critically appraise commercial banks and investment institutions within the international financial system;
  • 2. Critically appraise the operation of commercial banks, general insurance, life insurance, pension funds, and mutual funds, their advantages and disadvantages, and prospects;
  • 3. Apply agency theory, adverse selection, and moral hazard to banking and financial services in ethical dimensions of decision making process;
  • 4. Explain and critically appraise bank-based financial crises in developed countries and emerging markets;
  • 5. Appraise models explaining the determinants of credit, money supply and interest rates.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 6. Develop strong theoretical arguments based on analytical and statistical reasoning;
  • 7. Critically appraise theory and practice in finance;
  • 8. Analyse quantitative and qualitative information related to finance problems.

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 9. Apply the tools of finance and investment;
  • 10. Make appropriate use of learning resources.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning & Teaching activities22 (2 per week)Lectures
Scheduled Learning & Teaching activities10 (1 per week)Tutorials
Scheduled Learning & Teaching activities2Revision
Guided independent study116Reading and research, web-based activities

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Online MCQ tests and applied exercisesWeekly (1 hour)1-10Feedback and comments on ELE
Engagement with online discussion forum in relation to relevant areasOnline discussion contributions 1-10Online discussion feedback from peers and lecturer

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Blogpost301000 words1-10Written/verbal feedback from lecturer and peers
Assignment703000 words1-10Written/verbal feedback from lecturer and peers

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Blogpost (30%)Blogpost (1,000 word, 30%) 1-10August/September assessment period
Assignment (70%)Assignment (3,000 word, 70%) 1-10August/September assessment period

Syllabus plan

• Financial structure, financial intermediation, banking and finance myths
• General insurance
• Life insurance
• Pension funds
• Mutual funds
• Theory of non-bank financial intermediation
• Money and credit
• Interest rates and the flow of funds
• Commercial banks
• Global financial crisis

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Mishkin, F.S. (2019). Economics of Money, Banking and Financial Markets: Global Edition. 12th edition. Pearson Higher Education. (CORE)
Mishkin, F.S. and Eakins, S.G. (2018) Financial Markets and Institutions, Global Edition. 9th edition. Pearson Higher Education. (CORE)
Mishkin F.S., Matthews, K., and Giuliodori, M. (2013), The Economics of Money, Banking and Financial Markets: European edition, Pearson Higher Education. (ISBN-10: 0273731807 • ISBN-13: 9780273731801 (CORE)
Howells, P. and Bain, K. (2008) The Economics of Money, Banking & Finance, 4th edition, Financial Times Press. (CORE)

Module has an active ELE page?


Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

All lecture and tutorial materials are posted on the intranet.

Indicative learning resources - Other resources

Supplementary reading materials are indicated in the references of each lecture.

Origin date


Last revision date