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Can GPT-4 Outperform Human Financial Analysts?

Last Updated on June 1, 2024 by SPN Editor

In a world where data is the new oil, artificial intelligence (AI) has emerged as the engine driving insights and decision-making. The latest entrant in this arena is GPT-4, an AI model demonstrating remarkable prowess in predicting corporate earnings, potentially surpassing traditional financial analysis. Can GPT-4 Outperform Human Financial Analysts?

Researchers from the University of Chicago embarked on a study to explore whether GPT-4 could outperform human financial analysts, and their findings were indeed surprising. While the discourse around AI replacing jobs has predominantly focused on lower-skilled roles, it now seems that even high-skilled professionals, such as investment and financial analysts, may need to reassess their career security.

GPT-4: Suprassing Human Financial Analysts

According to the researchers’ published paper, GPT-4 significantly outperforms human experts in analyzing a company’s financial data and predicting future earnings. The experiment involved presenting GPT-4 Turbo with standardized balance sheets and income statements. The model was tasked with determining the sustainability of the company’s economic performance and predicting whether its earnings would increase or decrease in the future.

By employing Chain-of-Thought (CoT) prompting, the researchers trained GPT-4 to emulate the thought process of financial analysts when examining the data. To focus exclusively on GPT-4’s numerical analysis capabilities, additional context—such as the company’s name, management discussions, or other corporate information—was withheld. Additionally, the financial data’s year was not provided, preventing GPT-4 from using its training data to infer specifics about the company or the economic environment of that time.

The results showed that GPT-4 achieved a prediction accuracy of 60%, surpassing the 53% accuracy achieved by human financial analysts on the same set of corporate figures. Human analysts typically combine their analysis of financial figures with industry insights and private knowledge about the company before making forecasts.

Despite having only the raw numbers and no additional context, GPT-4 outperformed the human experts. This could be attributed to GPT-4’s impartial, unbiased analysis, free from the sentiment or emotional biases that often affect human predictions.

The Rise of GPT-4

GPT-4, the fourth iteration of the Generative Pretrained Transformer series, is a language prediction model developed by OpenAI. Trained on a diverse range of internet text, it generates human-like text based on input. However, its capabilities extend beyond text generation, demonstrating an uncanny ability to predict corporate earnings with higher accuracy than traditional financial analysis.

Outperforming Traditional Analysis

Traditional financial analysis involves detailed examinations of a company’s financial statements, industry position, and market trends. While effective, this approach is time-consuming and subject to human error and bias. In contrast, GPT-4 leverages vast amounts of data, learning from patterns and correlations that might be missed by human analysts. Its predictions are based on a comprehensive understanding of not just a company’s financials, but also subtle cues from news articles, social media chatter, and market sentiment.

A Game Changer for the Financial Industry

The implications of GPT-4’s capabilities are profound for the financial industry. Investment firms and hedge funds, always seeking an edge in their investment decisions, might find GPT-4 an invaluable tool for forecasting earnings, potentially leading to more accurate predictions and higher returns. Moreover, GPT-4 could democratize financial analysis. Individual investors, lacking the expertise or resources to conduct in-depth financial analysis, could leverage GPT-4’s insights to make informed investment decisions.

The Road Ahead

While GPT-4’s performance in predicting earnings is impressive, it’s crucial to remember that AI models are only as good as the data they’re trained on. They do not possess an understanding of the world in the way humans do, and their predictions are not infallible. Thus, while GPT-4 could be a powerful tool for financial forecasting, its predictions should be used as one of many inputs in investment decision-making.

As AI models like GPT-4 become more prevalent, regulations ensuring their responsible use will be necessary. Issues such as data privacy, algorithmic bias, and transparency need to be addressed.


The advent of GPT-4 marks an exciting development at the intersection of AI and finance. Its ability to outperform traditional financial analysts in predicting earnings heralds a new era in financial forecasting. As we continue to explore its potential, GPT-4 could well become a staple in the financial analyst’s toolkit, transforming financial forecasting forever.

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