IFS Student Investor Challenge

18th May 15

Abbey College Cambridge Student Investor Challenge

Participating in the Student Investor Challenge is a brand new experience for me. Though I’ve heard about the stock market long before, I’ve never had a chance to actually buy and sell stocks. At the end of this competition, our team is 1606th overall, with a portfolio value of £109,609.81. We’ve made 9.61% profit, which is not a bad result after three months. The profit is mainly made by investment in Scottish Oriental Smaller Companies Trust PLC/The and in ARM Holding PLC. We chose the Oriental fund mainly because of the good economy in Asia, including China, South Korea, India etc. And the reason we invested in ARM is that the latest operation system by Microsoft, Windows 8, has officially supported the processor structure by ARM. From my point of view, this would hugely increase the demand for their processors, as Windows is one of the most widely used operating system. Even if Windows 8 is a failure the fast- increasing market of smartphones could also lead to huge demand for ARM’s processors.

Compared to the best team in this challenge, which has made more than 100% profit during these three months, there’re still a lot for us to improve. For instance, we checked the portfolio about once every two days, if we had checked more regularly we might have done as well!

We hope other students from Abbey College Cambridge will do even better in following years.

David Farrell, teacher of Economics, who led the students, explains a little more about the challenge.

“A Level and GCSE students took part in the IFS Student Investor Challenge this year for the first time. Each team of 4 invests a virtual £100,000 in a set of stocks between 5 November 2012 and 1 February 2013. All the data they use is live and real (provided by Bloomberg). The teams that make the most profit go through to the regional finals. Each regional winner competes in the national final to win an all-expenses paid trip to New York. One of our teams is ranked within the top 20% of all teams across the country at this very moment. They gain many skills including; up to date knowledge about the economy, knowledge about each company they invest in, technical analysis (knowing when to buy and sell using mathematics) and decision making skills. They also have to communicate well with each other in order to be successful.

Honourable mentions for Zhang Jiayang, Pham Manh Tung, Aidar Surakmatov and Mamman Bunu who made £8,000 profit. Which would buy you this VW Beetle with cash to spare!

And Soon il kwon, Zhang Zhen, Zhang chao and Li Chunyang who made £7,000 profit. Enough for a 2 night stay in the Linley Suite at the infamous Claridge’s hotel.

Its all virtual though guys so you will have to settle for the glory rather than the cash!”