SoftBank, Mizuho to rely on AI for consumer loans

Maria Nikolova

J.Score, a joint venture of SoftBank Group and Mizuho Bank, will be using an AI score to determine the best loan conditions, including interest rates and the maximum amount of money to be provided.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) will help J.Score, a joint venture of SoftBank Group Corp (TYO:9984) and Mizuho Bank, offer loans tailored to the specific needs and life style of each consumer. In an announcement on Monday, the companies unveiled the launch of their new service which will decide on consumer loans based on an AI score. In fact, an AI technology will be responsible for the calculation and analysis of the score.

To make use of the new service, a potential borrower must register on J.Score’s website and then proceed to answer to a minimum of 18 basic questions, concerning one’s life style and preferences. The AI solution may ask questions about one’s dreams, for instance, in order to determine how a person will spend the money.

The novel technology aims to detect future high earners too. This means that people whose current income is not very high when they apply for a loan but are determined as high earners by the AI solution may not be neglected and will not (as usual) get a small amount of money.

The AI score will help J.Score determine the most appropriate interest rates and maximum amount of money to be provided to each customer.

In what is seen as an attractive feature for the younger clientele, the service is entirely web-based, with dedicated mobile applications on their way.

AI keeps taking over more roles in financial services companies, especially when it comes to performing time-consuming tasks involving heavy data amounts. Thus, AI has now been used for monitoring AML compliance. On Monday, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, Inc. (TYO:8316) and SAS Institute Japan Ltd. announced a partnership that will see AI being used in the AML compliance department of Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation. AI will be used to detect and report suspicious transactions with regard to anti-money laundering regulations.

Market surveillance is also an area where AI is applied. In February 2017, Japan Exchange Regulation (JPX-R) and Tokyo Stock Exchange, Inc. (TSE) announced they are working on using AI in their market surveillance operations thanks to technologies developed by NEC Corp (TYO:6701) and Hitachi, Ltd. (TYO:6501).

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