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Financial Services

Azure GPT-4 Analysis of the New CRA: Part 1

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The following information was generated by utilizing the Azure GPT-4-32k variant, which is part of the Azure OpenAI Service. Compared to the publicly available ChatGPT, Azure GPT-4 offers equivalent accuracy in problem solving.  

Advantages of Azure GPT-4-32k 

  • Available in 128K context and 32K context variants. 
    • Larger context size, better suited for detailed discussions. 
  • More cost-effective in terms of input and output pricing. 
    • Ideal for complex conversations, long-form content, and tasks requiring extensive context. 

Azure GPT-4 was created by Perficient’s Generative AI Innovation Group which aims to drive innovation, connection, and community to Perficient’s clients, colleagues, partners, and investors. The group focuses on the emergence of generative AI tools and capabilities, and the impact these technologies have on businesses today.  

The AI Innovation Group is developing proofs of content (POCs) to help clients explore generative AI use cases and operationalize them through policies, advocacy, controls and enablement.  

Another notable initiative while the team was creating Azure GPT-4 involved setting up a sandbox for Perficient’s Finance Services Center of Excellence (FS CoE). This sandbox enabled the FS CoE to analyze the newly revised Community Reinvestment Act, which was published by federal bank regulators, into a concise 1,300 pages, in mere moments.

See Azure analysis example below:  

Question asked – “Generate a 1,000 word blog on the CRA”  

The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) is a groundbreaking piece of legislation designed to encourage commercial banks and savings associations to meet the needs of borrowers in all segments of their communities, including low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. This is done in a manner that is compatible with the safe and sound operation of such institutions. The Act has played a pivotal role in providing access to credit for individuals and communities that might otherwise be overlooked. 

The CRA requires the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Board), and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) to assess a bank’s record of meeting the credit needs of its entire community. This includes both the provision of services and the location of branches. Once this examination is completed, the agencies are required to prepare a written evaluation of the institution’s record, which is then made available to the public. 

One of the key aspects of the CRA is its emphasis on transparency and public involvement. Banks are required to maintain a public file that includes a variety of information about their operations and performance under the Act. This includes information about their branches, such as their location and services provided; the public section of their most recent CRA Performance Evaluation, prepared by the respective agency; and comments received from the public relating to their performance in helping to meet community credit needs, along with responses to those comments. 

In addition to evaluating a bank’s performance in meeting the credit needs of its community, the CRA also guides the agencies in deciding on certain applications submitted by the bank. This means that a bank’s compliance with the CRA can influence its ability to merge with other banks, open new branches, or conduct similar activities. 

Public engagement is highly encouraged under the CRA. Members of the community can send written comments about a bank’s performance in helping to meet community credit needs to the respective agency and the bank itself. These comments are considered in the bank’s CRA evaluation and may be made public. The agencies also publish a list of banks that are scheduled for CRA examination each quarter, allowing community members to stay informed and contribute their views. 

The CRA has not been without its fair share of challenges and criticisms, however. Some commenters have expressed concern about the subjectivity of comments and the risk of creating an inaccurate representation of a bank’s performance. There is also concern about how effectively the CRA incentivizes activities in rural areas or smaller urban areas. 

Despite these challenges, the CRA remains a vital tool for ensuring that banks serve the needs of their entire community. The legislation continues to evolve to meet the changing needs of communities and the banking industry. With continued public engagement and transparency, the CRA will continue to play a pivotal role in promoting access to credit and ensuring that banks fulfill their obligations to all segments of their communities.

Read More: Regulatory Risk & Compliance in Financial Services 

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This blog was co-authored by: Andrea Milano, Noelle Reinhold, AbdulKadir Sheikh, Lalit Diwate, Akshay Suryawanshi, Akshay Admane, Raj Merchant, and Ashish Chakole

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Carl Aridas

Carl is certified in the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe), a Scrum Master, and a Six Sigma Green Belt project manager with more than 25 years of experience in financial services overseeing large-scale development global, multi-currency accounting, regulatory reporting, and financial reporting software platforms. He has hands-on experience completing, reviewing, and filing Federal Reserve, FFIEC, and IRS reports, including Call Reports, Y9C reports, 2900 reports, TIC reports, and arbitrage rebate reports.

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