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Generative AI changing the legal landscape

Also: FOMO driving retail investors to AI stocks


Picture this - a world where AI plays the lawyer, shaving off hours of legal legwork. A whopping 44% of legal tasks could potentially be automated! Can you imagine? Yet, the road to acceptance among the legal eagles is long and winding. Meanwhile, the tantalizing promise of AI as a burnout balm seems to be a double-edged sword, sparking as much joy as anxiety. And for our grand finale, we zoom over to Wall Street, where the lure of AI-powered fortunes is drawing retail investors like bees to honey. Intrigued?

What are we slicing into today:

  • 👩🏻‍⚖️Generative AI could radically alter the practice of law

  • 🥵Why AI won't be the burnout cure we've been waiting for

  • 🚀‘Fear of missing out’ drives retail investors to ride AI wave

  • 🐯Asia (ex China) Is Asleep At The AI Wheel

According to a survey by Goldman Sachs, 44% of legal tasks could be completed by AI, especially those involving the examination of tedious documents. A tool like ChatGPT could be used to improve legal research and document review. Despite the potential, many lawyers remain skeptical, with a recent survey finding that only 51% believe generative AI should be used for legal work. However, as the technology improves and as lawyers become more familiar with the technology, acceptance is likely to increase. AI could transform the legal field in significant ways: it could lessen the manpower advantage of large firms, alter how firms generate revenue, and potentially reduce the number of lawyers needed in the industry. In the short term, AI could make legal services more affordable, particularly for smaller businesses, and it could make it easier for ambitious law graduates to start their own practices. Overall, the adoption of AI in law could lead to more efficient resolutions for clients.

AI, particularly generative tools like ChatGPT, are being embraced by many workers and some early research suggests that these technologies can lead to productivity boosts and improved job satisfaction. For instance, a study from the National Bureau of Economic Research found a 14% increase in productivity among customer service representatives working with an AI chat assistant. However, experts warn that while AI has the potential to automate mundane tasks and potentially ease burnout, it might also create more space for new tasks, potentially exacerbating workloads. There's also a risk that increased productivity might lead to job reductions, adding to the remaining employees' workloads. Danielle Lee, an associate professor at MIT Sloan School of Management, points out that companies have a choice: they can share the benefits of increased productivity by reducing work hours, or they can focus solely on the bottom line. Yehuda Baruch, professor of Management at the University of Southampton Business School, suggests that burnout isn't only caused by overwork or repetitive tasks, but can also stem from job anxiety, such as the fear of AI taking over human jobs. The article concludes by highlighting that burnout is a complex issue, with causes ranging from overwork to lack of job satisfaction, and that the impact of AI on these factors is not yet fully understood.

After a period of favoring cash or low-risk money market funds, retail investors have significantly increased their exposure to technology stocks, with net purchases of U.S. stocks reaching nearly $1.5bn at the end of May 2023, the highest daily figures in three months. This shift towards riskier assets has been motivated by the Nasdaq Composite’s 27% gain so far this year, with significant inflows observed in the Information Technology ETFs of Vanguard and Fidelity. However, there is uncertainty surrounding the trend, with retail investors' willingness to invest in equities hinting at their resilience to high inflation. The only stock attracting retail capital similar to GameStop's craze in 2021 is C3.ai, a U.S.-based software provider. Despite concerns of overvaluation, the company's shares have jumped 195% this year. Nvidia, by contrast, has risen 170% in the year to date. Analysts warn of a downside risk to the wider U.S. stock market due to high equity valuations and a turnaround in risk sentiment around AI-related stocks.

While AI's global impact has been substantial, with companies like Nvidia seeing their market value exceed $1 trillion, it has also raised concerns about job loss and potential existential threats to humanity. China stands out in the Asian region for making AI a policy priority under President Xi Jinping, while Japan and the tiger economies of South Korea, Taiwan, and Singapore lead in semiconductor manufacturing, crucial for AI technology. However, a significant part of Asia remains indifferent to AI's potential implications. Countries like India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam, which heavily rely on trade and investment, need to consider the potential job losses AI could cause. Finally, the article emphasizes the need for proactive engagement from regional governance platforms like ASEAN, APEC, and the East Asia Summit to manage the economic opportunities and social risks that AI presents​.

⭐️ Midjourney prompt of the day

bedroom melting into the ocean