Deutsche Bank: Arrival of the cybermen

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The boss of Deutsche Bank, John Cryan, thinks that his employees are robots.

Work work work work work

Cryan sees many of the roles that bankers perform as robotic in nature.

He predicts, as artificial intelligence becomes more developed, it’ll become increasingly tempting for banks to replace huge swathes of their workforce with machines.

Counter argument

Accountants in particular were singled out in his remarks.

He called them human versions of an “abacus”, as many of their tasks involve counting. He predicts they’ll be replaced with robotic calculators.  It’d mean calculations could take hours instead of weeks, freeing up any remaining accountants to analyse the results.

Industry agrees

Ex-CEO of Barclays bank in 2015 anticipated that staff numbers will be cut on the back of technological advances.

Meanwhile, an economist with the Bank of England recently suggested upto 15m jobs throughout the UK economy are at risk from the cybermen.

Money money money

Because banks are finding it difficult to grow profits due to the abundance of cheap money and low interest rates, cutting staff would be a way of upping margins.

And it’d probably have the backing of shareholders: cost to revenue ratio for Deutsche is around 85 when the German banking industry average is still a high 70. Cryan has promised to get costs down.

But

Some believe that there isn’t going to be this employment armageddon because it’d create mass unemployment, leaving banks with a significantly reduced customer base.

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