Risk management will take on an increasingly important role this year as financial firms struggle to survive the fallout from last year's market mess.

Financial institutions are in a bit of a crisis mode right now, and mutual fund companies, banks and other financial services are already tightening controls, repositioning key people and escalating communications, said Bill Schlich, head of global banking and capital markets at Ernst & Young, during a recent webcast titled "Navigating the Crisis."

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