US banking customers are warming up to the idea of artificial intelligence (AI), with some parameters.

GFT reports that 44% of US consumers say they are happy with AI being used within their personal banking experience. That is the however subject to the proviso that banks allow them visibility into how it is being used. In addition, consumers have strong opinions about which banking functions AI should be involved with.

GFT Banking Disruption Index

GFT’s Banking Disruption Index reveals that the use of AI to enhance aspects of consumers’ everyday banking and to keep them protected from cyber threats are applications consumers are more likely to embrace. But it varies according to the age of the consumer.

GFT surveyed 2,002 US consumers to understand their boundaries when it comes to AI in personal banking. It then analysed its findings and identified where banks should prioritise to better serve users and also maintain market share.

Consumers are leaning heavily into practical applications of AI in banking

GFT notes that customers are open to AI in banking. But consumers are not yet ready for AI to expand too far beyond simplifying and automating day-to-day banking capabilities. To retain consumers’ trust and satisfaction, traditional banks should focus on enhancing AI solution on the following consumer priorities.

  • Following 2023’s surge in fraud, consumers are turning to AI. When asked what features they were most open to using in their day to day banking, the majority of Americans chose real time fraud monitoring (35%). AI in fraud monitoring presents an opportunity for banks and consumers to better protect money and accounts following last year’s surge in fraudulent transactions.
  • Consumers are focused on trying to save money in 2024. 90% of US citizens are looking to save money each month. Nearly a third want banking AI to help them reach those goals. Saving advice closely follows fraud monitoring as the second most chosen AI capability consumers are happy with (32%). This encompasses both everyday spending and saving as well as long term investment and wealth management.
  • Make way for AI money managers. Consumers want AI to help them with their everyday banking to do list. 28% call out tasks such as checking balances, transferring funds and receiving account updates as something they would like automated.

Gen Z is open to AI but Boomers are wary

There is a distinct split in sentiment around AI between the younger and older generations. Respondents aged 18 to 24 were amenable to AI in banking depending on the use cases. But respondents aged 55 and up were three times more likely to shut down the idea of AI use at banks entirely.

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“Retaining consumers’ business is no longer just a matter of digital transformation for banks, it’s one of AI implementation. But in order to maintain their long-term trust and satisfaction, banks need to understand where their priorities lie,” said Marco Santos, CEO Americas at GFT. “While it may seem that digitally native competitors would have a leg up in the AI-race, consumers’ banking wishlist of fraud detection, banking advice, and other day to day tasks are all capabilities that traditional banks are more than capable of enhancing with AI. Bringing these optimised experiences to consumers, combined with legacy institutions’ long established security regulations, empowers traditional banks to not only maintain market share but also establish a strong initial foundation with consumers. This will allow them to scale securely moving forward.”

The full report is available to download via this link.