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AI to help Mizuho-SoftBank venture decide who gets loans

Smartphone-filed applications to be processed in 30 minutes

TOKYO -- Mizuho Bank and SoftBank in September will introduce a new consumer loan service that can process an application in 30 minutes -- with the help of artificial intelligence.

The AI software will consider various indicators, such as a borrower's bank and mobile phone bill records, then spit out a score indicating the borrower's creditworthiness.

The service will target consumers in their 20s and 30s, and the companies expect it to develop into a key revenue stream.

It will be operated by J.Score, a joint venture that the two companies established last year.

Prospective borrowers will input the required information via their smartphones. A creditworthiness scale that goes up to a score of 1,000 will be used to determine the maximum lendable amount -- capped at one-third of a borrower's annual income -- and lending rate. Consumers who score high on the scale can borrow more and get lower rates.

The software will also consider how frequently borrowers use ATMs, the borrowers' hobbies and what the money will be spent on. It will also take into account the length of a prospective borrower's mobile phone service contract.


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