Here's How Investors Can Use ChatGPT's New Upgrade for Investing – The Motley Fool

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To say ChatGPT helped usher artificial intelligence into the mainstream would be an understatement. After releasing on Nov. 30, 2022, it surpassed 100 million monthly active users two months later, making it the fastest-growing consumer application ever, according to UBS.
I previously wrote about how ChatGPT’s capabilities sparked an interest in the role it could play in investing, but my main concern was ChatGPT’s inability to produce real-time info on companies’ finances, market conditions, sector trends, and other relevant information.
However, I must admit this concern doesn’t hold as much weight now that ChatGPT has added web browsing and plugins. Both of these allow ChatGPT to remain current and integrate with other tools that can provide real-time information.
The web browsing and plugin features are only available to ChatGPT Plus users, who pay for a premium version of the AI tool. If you’re a ChatGPT Plus user, you can access these features by going to settings, beta features, and then enabling the “Browse with Bing” and “Plugins” tabs.
Part of being a sound investor is making sure you’re equipped with the most recent information possible. Otherwise, you could end up making investing decisions you may otherwise avoid. Previously, you could only get information up to the latest date of ChatGPT’s updated training data, but with web browsing, you can fetch real-time information from the web.
I used ChatGPT’s web browsing feature and asked it to “look up recent news about Apple that an investor may want to know before making an investment decision,” and it returned information about Apple’s Vision Pro Headset, new 15-inch MacBook Air, and new Mac Studio. I asked it this on June 6, and these products were announced on June 5.
Then, I gave the regular ChatGPT-4 the same prompt, and it responded with: “I’m sorry for any misunderstanding, but as an artificial intelligence model developed by OpenAI, I don’t have real-time internet browsing capabilities or the ability to pull up-to-the-minute news updates.” It also noted its last training cut-off was September 2021.
Web browsing can also provide sentiment analysis, which is how the public feels about a particular company or industry. It does so by scanning news articles, social media posts, forums, and various web pages. The public shouldn’t necessarily guide your investing decisions, but having a gist can sometimes be good.
Master investor Warren Buffett once said, “Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful,” and knowing market sentiment can help with that.
ChatGPT is just one tool, but its new plugin feature allows it to interact directly with many platforms and services that can provide valuable investing information about both markets and companies. This can be especially useful if you’re looking to perform a financial analysis.
A good use case would be asking ChatGPT to fetch a specific company’s latest quarterly earnings report. I installed the Public plugin and asked it to “give me a rundown of Inc‘s full-year fiscal 2023 financials,” and it provided accurate information about the company’s revenue, gross profit, and many other metrics.
I then asked it to perform an analysis on, given that information, and it took it a step further and gave me the buy/sell ratio — which tells you what percentage of transactions are buys versus sells according to Wall Street analysts — and current analyst recommendations. It noted that both sets of information were updated on June 6 and June 3, respectively.
Another way I’d recommend using various plugins is to get insight into various ratios. You can ask ChatGPT to calculate ratios like price-to-earnings, debt-to-equity, price-to-sales, price-to-book, and much more. These metrics are available from many other sources, but it’s helpful to have direct access to them within the ChatGPT platform.
Having the raw data is one thing, but it’s best to take it a step further and have ChatGPT help you analyze and put that information into perspective.
With all its wonderful capabilities, it’s still important to remember that ChatGPT should be a resource, but not necessarily your crutch or only resource. It can return information in a fraction of the time you can look it up and break down complex topics, but… it’s not you.
You can draw on personal experiences and gut feelings in a way an AI model never will be able to, and that’s an underrated part of investing. The best thing to do is figure out how to best balance AI and human insight in a way that best fits you. For example, you could use ChatGPT to perform a financial analysis and combine that with your insights into a company’s management and your feelings about them.
Stefon Walters has positions in Apple. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Apple. The Motley Fool recommends The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.
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