For generations government regulations and business traditions confined financial activities within national borders. Leaders and borrowers maintained relationships with domestic bankers, who offered little in the way of innovation or advantage. But the abolition of fixed exchange rates, along with hyper-inflation in the 1970s spelled the beginning of the end for this system. By the 1980s the financial game in the UK, Japan and USA was being played ith some important new rules, and by many new players. The old world of "relationship" banking had given way to financial transactions based upon price and product innovation. Macroeconomic forces and the policies of central bankers have profoundly altered international trade, exchange rates, and the flow of capital around the world. David Meerschwam explains these economic forces, describes the dramatic effects of de-regulation in the major centres of finance, and shows how financial services firms have had to alter their strategies and develop new skills in order to compete.