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What are the emerging trends and technologies shaping the future of finance, and how can individuals prepare themselves for these changes??

What are the emerging trends and technologies shaping the future of finance, and how can individuals prepare themselves for these changes? As a student that is very passionate about finance, I am interested in exploring the future of the industry and how I can best prepare myself.

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Frank’s Answer

Great Question!

Data Analytics is a very popular space now when it comes to reviewing data and putting a story behind it. I worked for a large Wealth Management firm and we used data to determine how we could help those entering the field become more successful. Being comfortable with tools such as Excel, SQL, Tableau to name a few goes a long way. As another poster mentioned, Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning is another up and coming field that is changing finance.

I hope this helps and best of luck,

-Frankie
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Karl’s Answer

Alice, the world of technology is changing so quickly and transforming all aspects of business every day. The only certainty we know is that technology will keep evolving and the way work gets done will keep changing along with it. This will impact the nature of how jobs/roles are constructed and executed. For example, I work in the insurance industry. The way people are underwritten for (said differently, "obtain") life insurance is changing dramatically. So much of what was done historically by long questionnaires and medical exams will continue to migrate towards existing data to be used and analyzed by AI to determine risk profiles. So what should you do? Keep reading about all the evolving technologies and what they can do. It doesn't mean you have to be an expert or a software engineer, but it does mean you need to understand the applicability of the technology to your areas of interest.
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Aaron’s Answer

Hello Alice! AI is undoubtedly the hottest technology trend right now. Although I'm not an expert in this area, I can tell from what I've read that it presents both significant risks and benefits. It all depends on how the developers control or enable its capabilities. While I don't think AI will take over the world, I do believe it poses a threat to many jobs today. That's why it's essential to prepare yourself for this possibility. Focus on learning skills that are thought to be irreplaceable by AI, or even study AI itself. One of the most in-demand jobs currently is "AI prompt engineer." These professionals excel at instructing AI on what to produce, which is crucial in its present stage. However, this job could also become outdated, as technology, including AI, tends to advance and improve much more rapidly than other sectors. I'm referring to Moore's Law, which describes the incredible pace at which computing power grows, allowing technology to progress exponentially. AI is expected to follow this pattern of exponential improvement. I hope this information is helpful!
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Edward’s Answer

Artificial Intelligence, crypto currency, and ESG come to mind as some of the leading trends in finance today. Challenges and opportunities around AI tend to be focused around how the technology can be leveraged to streamline processes and improve decision making. Challenges around crypto include regulation and risk management. Investors are increasingly demanding performance not solely for financial returns, but also across various ESG categories. Questions to help answer include how is investment performance standardized and reliably measured in terms of ESG impact, and how can investments provide comparable or superior returns to traditional non-ESG focused investments? Lots of progress being made in these areas but lots more work to go. Articles in major newspapers tend to provide helpful perspective on latest trends, while searches for academic publications is helpful to focus more on technical topics.
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Anup’s Answer

Data Science is another major area. Big Data is a major field in most professions. Having skills in Python, Tableau and databases helps.
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James’s Answer

An emerging trend I have seen within finance is the increase in use of and reliance on data. This includes many different aspects. In accounting, the increase in ESG (environmental, social and corporate governance) initiatives has led to Company's spending money on data collection software and systems. Within finance, newer investment opportunities have arose, such as those around AI and blockchain, requiring advanced knowledge and coding demands. I think if you were to focus on data in some way or fashion, this would set you up for success.
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Frank’s Answer

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is the hot topic right now. However, there is still a lot of new information in the areas of blockchain, robotic process automation (RPA), and sustainability (or ESG as a broader topic). Although there is a lot of information that you can google on these topics, I get a lot of reliable information from industry publications. I am in Internal Audit, so the Institute of Internal Auditors publication covers emerging trends and technologies and how it affects my profession. Depending on what area of finance you may have interest, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute (and several others) also have publications that will cover these topics for their industries. Most of these organizations have inexpensive or free student membership.
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