There are 4 reasons why jobs are disappearing — but AI isn't one of them

There are 4 reasons why jobs are disappearing — but AI isn't one of them
There are 4 reasons why jobs are disappearing — but AI isn't one of them, a new HSBC report says.andresr/Getty Images
  • AI isn't the foe we're making it out to be, at least according to HSBC's new Future of Work report.
  • Companies surveyed said the main reason for job losses are slower economic growth, the cost of living crisis, and the pandemic.

Despite fears that artificial intelligence is making humans redundant, a new report suggests that there are far greater threats to jobs than AI.

Slower economic growth, a rising cost of living, a supply chain crisis, and the COVID-19 pandemic are the main reasons leading to job losses, according to HSBC's Future of Work report published on July 18 and seen by Insider. The report cites data from the World Economic Forum (WEF) published in May.

Over 50% of the 803 companies surveyed by the WEF — collectively representing 11.3 million employees globally — believe slower economic growth will displace jobs.

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Interestingly, over 50% of firms surveyed believe that new technologies — including AI — will actually be job creators, not destroyers. Slightly under half of the companies surveyed believe AI technologies will lead to new jobs.

A separate survey by Microsoft published in May showed the majority of workers are pretty comfortable with AI taking over parts of their jobs — especially those pesky, repetitive tasks that can be delegated — but they're not ok with total replacement.


But to be sure, around 25% of HSBC's respondents believed AI would cost humans jobs — and some workers are already falling into the minority group of being replaced by the technology.

In May, nearly 4,000 people in the US were laid off because of AI, Insider reported, citing data from a human resources firm's report.

And one e-commerce CEO laid off 90% of its customer support staff after an AI chatbot outperformed them, Insider reported in July.

And while the AI debate rages on, perhaps we're missing one crucial point: Rather than obsessing over AI costing jobs, we should be more concerned about the quality and nature of the jobs that AI will create, as Paris Marx wrote for Insider.