AI Stocks Are Soaring… But Americans Aren’t That Interested in AI


  • Artificial intelligence (AI) stocks have taken off on the backs of chat bot launches by a number of different start-ups.
  • Blue-chip companies are doing anything to make themselves relevant to the new tech sector hype train.
  • However, studies show that Americans are actually not very excited about AI.
Illustration of hand pointing finger about to touch virtual "AI" graphic
Source: Rise

Far before February sparked the current artificial intelligence (AI) mania, people had been both waxing poetic about the technology as well as doom-saying an AI-filled future. AI is the subject of countless sci-fi movies, prompting conversation around whether it’s a worthy ethical pursuit. But, AI has also been used for years now in ways people might not even know — from sports analytics to recommending you new music. With bots like ChatGPT thrusting AI into the spotlight in a whole new way, AI stocks are on the rise as the hot new market for 2023. But are people as into AI as developers would have you believe? Not really.

The market is full of companies playing catch-up right now. The popularity in chat bots continues to draw attention. Tech giants are thus rushing to draw on the hype in unique ways. Earlier this week, music streaming service Spotify (NYSE:SPOT) expanded its use of AI with a computer-generated DJ featureMeta Platforms (NASDAQ:META) announced its own language model AI for researchers. Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) also tried to roll out its own chat bot, which saw many problems.

Yet, for all of the rush to hop on the AI gravy train, it seems like many companies haven’t taken a step back and asked themselves one very important question: Are people really enthusiastic about a future driven by AI? Is the fascination with ChatGPT one of eye-opening optimism for a computerized future? Or, could it be the opposite — a terrified glare at one’s Kubrick-scripted nightmare come reality?

FiveThirtyEight recently studied Americans’ feelings on AI. They contend the answer is more the latter.

AI Stocks Are Hot. But Are They What People Want?

The excitement around AI has gotten many blue chips in a rush to make new announcements tying them to the AI market. Meanwhile, AI stocks like (NYSE:AI) have seen gains north of 50% since the beginning of the year. But evidence does not suggest the excitement around AI extends much farther than the stock market.

This week, data journalism outlet FiveThirtyEight published a report revealing poll data that suggests only 18% of Americans are more excited than they are concerned about AI. Meanwhile, 45% say they are equally excited and concerned and 37% say they are more concerned than excited. There are more specific concerns Americans have around the technology, too, as the report goes on to detail. For instance, “while 72 percent of Americans believe that there will be a time when entire news articles are written by AI, 78 percent of Americans think this would be a bad thing.”

These responses come amid concerns that AI brings problems with misinformation, accuracy and bias. Indeed, when FiveThirtyEight tasked ChatGPT with writing an article, they found it made up data to evidence its thesis.

What people are comfortable with AI undertaking tends toward the mundane or jobs that would otherwise put workers in danger. Things like generating recipes or descending into coal mines. Jobs related to relaying important information, or taking charge over hazardous materials, however, are ones people feel uneasy about AI doing.

As it stands right now, AI tech is trending more toward “fad” than “future.” At least, that’s the case in the eyes of the American public. Just as with previous fads like blockchain and the metaverse, this opinion may prevail, causing a market shakedown that will leave only the strongest players. Or, it may shift as AI companies put these feelings at ease.

On the date of publication, Brenden Rearick did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the Publishing Guidelines.

Brenden Rearick is a Financial News Writer for InvestorPlace’s Today’s Market team. He mainly covers digital assets and tech stocks, with a focus on crypto regulation and DeFi.

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