Fifty One Degrees has released a comprehensive study revealing that a vast majority (84.6%) of operations within the banking, insurance, and FinTech sectors could significantly benefit from AI integration, potentially adding £41.7bn to the industry’s economic output.

  • 8 in 10 tasks will be made more efficient by deploying AI, whereas just over half of tasks will be higher quality where AI is used.
  • GenerativeAI (GenAI) is the most powerful AI technology for financial services, and GenAI Assistants would benefit 74.9% of tasks.
  • The greatest efficiency gains will be for internally focused tasks and processes, as opposed to customer-facing tasks, with an efficiency gain of 41% for internal tasks, and 34% for customer-facing. 
  • GenAI is expected to increase economic output in financial services by up to 15%, resulting in an additional £41.7bn of additional output from the sector.

Announcement from the Consultancy:

On the 19th of March, 2024, AI consultant firm Fifty One Degrees announced the findings of a research study, demonstrating the substantial impact of generative AI technology on financial services firms.

This extensive study assessed 311 tasks across 14 functional areas within the financial industry, evaluating the potential benefits of AI technologies and the extent of those benefits.

Transformative Potential of GenAI in Financial Services

The analysis reveals that GenAI Assistants, designed to support team members in specific functions, could revolutionise three-quarters of the tasks in financial and insurance companies. These assistants are particularly effective in roles that process large volumes of natural language information, such as Compliance and Underwriting, potentially leading to significant workflow automation or enhancement.

In addition, other AI tools, including AI-facilitated training and legal resources, powered by Generative AI and Large Language Models, could positively impact 39% of activities.

Sector-Wide Benefits and Economic Implications

The study suggests that functions like Analytics, Technology, Customer Services, and Underwriting could see both efficiency and quality improvements through GenAI use. While functions such as Compliance and Legal may mainly benefit from efficiency gains, the overall quality of work might not increase at the same pace.

The economic impact of integrating GenAI into banking and financial services could be profound, with a potential 15% increase in economic output, contributing an additional £41.7bn to the sector’s value.

Insights from Fifty One Degrees Leadership

Recent research estimates that Generative AI will drive $2.6 trillion to $4.4 trillion annually in value for global companies. Within Financial Services and Insurance, that figure is $200 billion to $340 billion, which is equivalent to 9 to 15 per cent of operating profits.  The UK financial services and insurance industries produce £278bn of economic output. A 15% boost would generate a staggering £41.7bn of additional economic output. Further, the UK financial services industry equates to 8.3% of the entire UK economy and 2.5 million people are employed in the sector. Therefore, any gains made by financial institutions would have far-reaching impacts across the wider UK economy.
Commenting on the study, co-founder and CEO of Fifty One Degrees, Nick Harding said “The UK financial services industry is a powerhouse that fuels the local economy by servicing consumers and businesses, but is also the UK’s biggest export. Enabling this industry, which is so critical to our collective success, to remain at the forefront of technology is something we’re passionate about. Assertively adopting generative AI will enable UK financial services to grow further, enabling this vital sector to remain a global leader.

And this is just the beginning. This study represents the generative AI technology and tools that are available today. What we’ve experienced is rapid development and evolution of the technology and its capabilities, meaning the opportunity for businesses to benefit will only increase.”