AI: what does it mean for investing?

AI is revolutionising the world of investing in ways previously unimaginable. Here, we’ll examine the implications of AI on investing, its current applications and the pros and cons.


Key takeaways:

  • How Artificial Intelligence (AI) is currently being used to shape investment decisions, with applications such as sentiment analysis and algorithmic trading.
  • The AI applications that are expected to play a central role in the future of investing, including Explainable AI and advanced data analytics.

Technological advancements have continuously reshaped the way we invest and manage our money. One such example that has been gaining significant traction and attracting a large amount of attention in recent years is AI (Artificial Intelligence) investing. 

With its ability to analyse vast amounts of data, identify patterns, and make informed predictions, AI is revolutionising the world of investing in ways previously unimaginable.

Here, we’ll examine the implications of AI on investing, its current applications, the pros and cons, and what the future holds for AI in financial services.

What is AI investing?

Artificial Intelligence, a branch of computer science, involves the development of computer systems that can perform tasks that typically require human intelligence. In the context of investing, AI utilises algorithms and machine learning techniques to analyse data, recognise patterns, and make investment decisions without human intervention.

One of the primary implications of AI in investing is its potential to enhance decision-making processes by leveraging vast datasets and complex algorithms. Traditional investment strategies typically rely on human judgement, which can be influenced by emotions and biases. AI, on the other hand, can analyse data objectively and make data-driven decisions based on historical trends and real-time information.

Current applications of AI in investing

AI has already made significant inroads into various aspects of investing, including portfolio management, risk assessment, and trading strategies. Some of the key applications of AI in investing include:

  • Algorithmic trading: AI-powered algorithms are increasingly being used to execute trades at high speeds and analyse market conditions in real-time. These algorithms can identify trading opportunities and execute trades with minimal human intervention, leading to improved efficiency and reduced transaction costs.
  • Robo-advisers: Robo-advisers, automated investment platforms that use AI algorithms to create and manage investment portfolios, have become popular among individual investors. These platforms offer personalised investment advice based on factors such as risk tolerance, investment goals, and market conditions, making investing more accessible and affordable for the mass market.
  • Sentiment analysis: AI algorithms are being employed to analyse social media, news articles, and other sources of information to gauge market sentiment and predict market movements. By analysing the tone and content of online conversations, AI can identify emerging trends and sentiment shifts that may impact investment decisions.
  • Risk management: AI-powered risk management systems can assess the risk associated with investment portfolios and identify potential vulnerabilities. These systems use machine learning algorithms to analyse historical data and predict future risk factors, allowing investors to make more informed decisions and mitigate potential losses.

The pros and cons of using AI investment platforms

  • Data analysis: AI platforms can quickly analyse vast amounts of data from various sources, including market trends, financial statements, news articles, and social media sentiment, to make informed investment decisions.
  • Speed: AI algorithms can execute trades much faster than humans, taking advantage of fleeting opportunities in the market, such as arbitrage opportunities, which involves exploiting price differences of the same asset in different markets or in different forms. Essentially, it is the process of buying an asset in one market where the price is lower and simultaneously selling it in another where the price is higher, thereby profiting from the price discrepancy.
  • 24/7 monitoring: AI platforms can monitor markets around the clock, enabling continuous monitoring of investment positions and reacting to changes in real-time, which may not be feasible for human investors.
  • Emotionless decision making: AI-driven investment strategies are not influenced by emotions, like fear or greed, which can lead to more rational and disciplined decision-making, especially during volatile market conditions.
  • Portfolio diversification: AI platforms can help investors build diversified portfolios by analysing a wide range of asset classes, sectors, and geographic regions simultaneously, potentially reducing overall portfolio risk.
  • Accessibility: AI platforms can democratise access to sophisticated investment strategies and tools, allowing retail investors to access institutional-grade investment algorithms and insights.
  • Lack of human judgement: While AI algorithms excel at processing data and identifying patterns, they may lack the intuition and qualitative judgement that human investors possess, especially in situations where non-quantifiable factors play a significant role.
  • Overreliance on historical data: AI models rely heavily on historical data to make predictions about future market movements. However, past performance is not always indicative of future results, and unexpected events or structural changes in the market can render historical patterns obsolete.
  • Black box algorithms: Some AI models operate as "black boxes," meaning their decision-making process is opaque and not easily understandable by humans. This lack of transparency can make it difficult for investors to trust the recommendations or understand the rationale behind investment decisions.
  • Risk of technology failures: AI platforms are susceptible to technical glitches, bugs, or cybersecurity breaches, which could disrupt trading operations or compromise sensitive investor data.
  • Market saturation: As more investors adopt AI-driven strategies, the market may become saturated with similar algorithms, reducing the effectiveness of these strategies and potentially leading to crowded trades.
  • Regulatory uncertainty: The regulatory landscape surrounding AI-driven investing is still evolving, raising questions about legal and ethical considerations, such as algorithmic bias, insider trading detection, and fiduciary responsibilities.


AI investing represents a paradigm shift in the world of finance, offering the promise of improved efficiency, accuracy, and accessibility when it comes to investing. 

From algorithmic trading to robo-advisers, AI-powered solutions are already transforming the way we invest and manage our money. 

As AI technology continues to evolve, its impact on investing is expected to increase, ushering in a new era of data-driven decision-making and innovation in the financial services industry.

By harnessing the power of AI, you could gain a competitive edge in an increasingly complex and dynamic market environment. It is, however, important to recognise that AI is not a magic bullet and comes with its own set of challenges and risks. 


Important information: This document has been prepared by IOOF Investment Management Limited (IIML) ABN 53 006 695 021, AFS Licence No. 230524 as Trustee of the IOOF Portfolio Service Superannuation Fund ABN 70 815 369 818 (Fund). IOOF Employer Super is a Division of the Fund. IIML is part of the Insignia Financial of companies, consisting of Insignia Financial Ltd ABN 49 100 103 722 and its related bodies corporate. This is general advice only and does not take into account your financial circumstances, needs and objectives. Before making any decision based on this document, you should assess your own circumstances or seek advice from a financial adviser and seek tax advice from a registered tax agent. Please obtain and consider the PDS and the Target Market Determination (TMD) both of which are available for consumers to better understand products before making any decision about whether to acquire a financial product. Information is current at the date of issue and may change.