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The Robots Are Coming, Stock Analysis Jobs At Risk

The Robots Are Coming, Stock Analysis Jobs At Risk

by Giulio PriscoJuly 14, 2015

Each day, Wall Street produces millions of words encouraging investors to buy or sell stocks, bonds and mutual funds. In the future, more of those words might not be written by humans, warns The Wall Street Journal in a provocative article titled “Can You Tell the Difference Between a Robot and a Stock Analyst?

Wall Street is beginning to use AI to automate financial news reporting and analysis, which is becoming an effective way to cut costs. The Wall Street Journal article lists some of the AI startups that are threatening to put human stock analysts and financial advisers out of work.

Robots Write Financial Reports Faster, Better, and Cheaper

AI insightNarrative Science Inc. launched in 2010 with computer-generated news articles, produced by AI systems that scan the web to identify appropriate snippets of text and integrate them in a consistent narrative – which is what most human news writers do, but the machines are learning how to do it faster, better, and cheaper. Narrative Science added similar products for financial-services businesses in 2013, and these products now account for most of the company’s revenue.

Powered by AI, Narrative Science’s advanced natural language generation platform Quill, used among others by Credit Suisse, American Century Investments and Fidelity Investments, goes beyond reporting the numbers – it creates written narratives for any intended audience. “While advances in data visualization and data science are helpful, they don’t take us the last mile,” states the Narrative Science website. “Quill immediately adds value to data by identifying the most relevant information and relaying it through professional, conversational language.”

The result? Intelligent narratives that efficiently communicate the insights buried in Big Data that people can comprehend, act on and trust.

Other startups offering automated reports for financial-services firms include Automated Insights, Yseop, Capital Cube and Goldman Sachs -backed Kensho Technologies. Experts predicts that the number of analysts will continue to fall at larger firms, in part because of the push to automate.

Stock analysts aren’t the only white collar workers to be threatened by the rising performance and cost-effectiveness of AI systems. Tony Williams, founder of the British-based legal consulting firm Jomati Consultants, is persuaded that AI and and robotics will change the entire legal landscape in just over a decade, and future law firms will see nearly all their process work handled by artificial intelligence robots.

A Jomati report titled “Civilisation 2030: The Near Future for Law Firms” predicts that the artificial intelligence technology will replace all the work involving processing information.

AI bots could foreseeably take over any work with a systemic component that involves the processing of information.

That essentially means that the robots are coming to take all white collar jobs, with the exception of jobs that require a high degree of creativity and other human traits that can’t be efficiently emulated by automation.


Images from Narrative Science and Wikimedia Commons.

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  • Burnt Eloi

    mmkay, how about we dont let AI run rampant through our financials? Just a suggestion.

    • venzen

      The way I’m understanding the article it is talking about AIs doing market analysis and reporting, which given the complexity and tedium of the task, makes sense.

      However, when it comes to making investment and trading decisions based on that AI-produced data, it is certain that such a task can only profitably be done by a human being: the task requires human intelligence and creativity, because the markets are an expression of human mass psychology.

      • Giulio Prisco

        Let’s enjoy our superiority to machines for tasks that require intelligence and creativity – until it lasts. Won’t last long.

    • Giulio Prisco

      But we do, for high frequency trading and other specific applications suitable for the speed and algorithmic accuracy of AIs. Someday soon, AIs will be able to take over other more creative tasks as well.

  • gogoboy

    A new way to manipulate market: spread false alerts and news to confuse AI.

  • venzen

    Once the Bitcoin protocol’s consensus rules incorporate machine learning, we’d have a benevolent, distributed AI botnet to put all those banksters, politicians and lawyers out of work!

  • Gooseling

    With Decentralization it wont be easy to manipulate markets as it is today. As for Employment Risk The most expensive would be the first to go and would resist the most.
    I am yet to find a bot that really does the range of work required though it will come soon enough. If anyone knows of a good bot that does the analysis and gives a relatively accurate forecast do let us know.
    Hope someone sets up a comparison page soon 🙂

  • John VanWagoner

    As consciousness evolves humanity will eventually be left behind..