Financial regulation is a broad set of policies that apply to the financial sector in most jurisdictions, justified by two main features of finance: systemic risk, which implies that the failure of financial firms involves public interest considerations; and information asymmetry, which justifies curbs on freedom of contract in selected areas of financial services, particularly those that involve retail clients and/or Principal–agent problems. An integral part of financial regulation is the supervision of designated financial firms and markets by specialized authorities such as securities commissions and bank supervisors.
In some jurisdictions, certain aspects of financial supervision are delegated to self-regulatory organizations. Financial regulation forms one of three legal categories which constitutes the content of financial law, the other two being market practices and case law.
^Joanna Benjamin 'Financial Law' Oxford University Press