Blockchain, Intelligence Artificielle

New Technologies Taking Over JP Morgan

JP Morgan has a program that relies on artificial intelligence and that can save lawyers 360,000 hours every year (1).

What is Artificial Intelligence?

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is defined as “a branch of computer science dealing with the simulation of intelligent behavior in computers” and “the capability of a machine to imitate intelligent human behavior” (2).

Artificial intelligence programs or robots were created to react like humans. They learn from what we feed them.

JP Morgan’s COIN

The program used by JP Morgan is called COIN (short for Contract Intelligence) and it does what its name suggests: read and interpret contracts, more specifically commercial-loan agreements. Thanks to COIN, documents that took hours to be reviewed are now reviewed and interpreted in seconds (1).

In order to achieve that, a technology called Machine Learning was used.
Machine learning is defined as “a method of data analysis that automates analytical model building” (3). The algorithms learn from the data given to them. The more we give, the more they learn, making them more powerful each time.

So the more contracts are given to the program by the lawyers at JP Morgan, the more powerful and efficient said program becomes.

COIN helps the bank save money and time by allowing the lawyers to work on tasks that are less redundant and more important. It also limits human errors.  Indeed, interpreting as many as 12,000 contracts (1) per year can become tiring and lawyers can become weary and thus less attentive, leading to mistakes.

Using technology is also a way for banks to stay relevant. In an article entitled Innovate or die: Top tech trends in banking (4), it is said that “banks risk being disrupted by a wave of Fintech startups. These are companies using new technologies to provide innovative kinds of financial services”. If they do nothing, banks as we know them today run the risk of disappearing.
And after all the scandals, they need a way to earn people’s trust again. Using automated programs that can limit errors is a good way to start.

Banks Investing in New Technologies

The technology budget at JP Morgan “amounts to 9 percent of its projected revenue — double the industry average” (1).

Many banks have already realized or are starting to realize that things are evolving very quickly and that if they do not want to miss an opportunity, they need to invest in technology. Not everything they will invest in will work but investing in one good technology could save them.

One of the technologies banks are investing in is the Blockchain. Indeed, in an article from July 2016 (5), we mentioned the fact that the Société Générale in France as well as Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan in the US were part of a consortium of over 50 international financial institutions that aimed at finding a middle ground for the use of Blockchains in the banking industry. Things have changed since then: it is not 50 but 80 institutions that are now working together (6).
Contracts written on the Blockchain will automatically be legally binding and immutable. A third party will no longer be needed. Everything will be written online, making it even easier for programs like COIN to read them.

Banks are also investing in what is called voice biometrics – a technology using the unique characteristics in a person’s voice to identify them.  Banks like ING Netherlands (7) and La Banque Postale offer voice authentication for online transactions. It means that when ordering something online or asking for information pertaining to a bank account over the phone or online, the customer’s voice will be used to authorize the transaction instead of answering a personal question or typing a code. Barclays, HSBC and Santander have also invested and use this new technology.
Transactions are more secure and one’s personal information (or money) is less likely to end up in the hands of malevolent people. It also means fewer complaints filed over the fact that someone stole a customer’s card and used it against their will.


Banks are investing more and more money, time and human resources in new technologies. It is worth it since these technologies are to ones helping them cut costs, hours worked and prevent mistakes.
One of the biggest fears among people when it comes to artificial intelligence and new technologies in general is losing their job to robots or machines. In the banking industry, it more likely humans and AI will work together. But the jobs done by lawyers or other people working in that field will fundamentally be transformed.


By Marine Rouet

Published on June 9th, 2017



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