Economist Predicts AI Could Significantly Disrupt U.S. Wages

An economist who predicted in 2013 that nearly half of all jobs in the U.S. were under threat from “computerization” is now saying that AI programs like ChatGPT could be as disruptive to the labor market as Uber was for taxis.

With real wages steadily falling amid the pronounced economic slump that has characterized the Biden Administration, economist Carl Benedikt Frey is saying that the rise of AI could spell more trouble for workers in America.

Via Yahoo News:

Just 10 years ago, a lot of artificial-intelligence-related developments felt like science fiction, and predictions for how they would shape industries were often ominous for workers. In 2013, two Oxford University economists, Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osborne, wrote a paper in which they predicted that 47% of U.S. employment was under threat from “computerisation” or automation.

A decade later, automation is here and fast becoming a part of almost every industry. But Frey doesn’t think that we’re at nearly half of human workers being replaced just yet. He does think, however, that ChatGPT could create a lot more competition, which would lower wages.

“I think there’s a risk that ChatGPT makes us a lot more productive in easy-to-do stuff, but the hard part to figure out is how we can use A.I. to create innovation that then creates new occupations and new industries,” Frey told Fortune.

Frey said that the AI industry, which is experiencing huge investments from venture capital, could have the same downward pressure on wages that Uber caused in the taxi industry.

“Uber didn’t reduce the demand for taxi drivers,” Frey said in a comment to Insider. “It, if anything, increased the number of people driving cars for a living, but it reduced the amount [and] the earnings capacity of incumbent drivers.”



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