Ever wonder what it would be like to have $1.1 million to invest—before you’ve even graduated college?
Finance students in Loyola’s College of Business do just that. Since 2009 the student-managed investment fund class has given students the opportunity to invest real dollars in real-time trading. Expanding students’ knowledge and skill set, the class allows students to explore the investment process and gain experience that better positions them in the job market.
Limited to 15 students, the class was created by the late Dr. Ron Christner. Now under the direction of Dr. Mehmet Dicle, the class continues to hit its mark, starting the spring 2017 semester below $600,000 and finishing at about $630,000. (The remainder of the $1.1 million is invested in a CD.) Dicle starts each semester having students review and update the fund’s investment objectives. Students are then responsible for evaluating and analyzing an already existing investment and proposing and arguing for one new investment for the fund. That investment must be agreed to by the class before purchase.
The ability to convince your peers your investment idea is a good one is a skill that students who have previously taken the class value. As alumnus Eric Bonhagen ’15 (accounting and finance) points out: “Above all else, the student managed fund taught me how to work in a team. You can ask 10 people what they think of a particular stock, and you’ll get 10 different answers. In the team environment structure of this class, you have to be willing to challenge your own biases and admit when someone else has a more compelling idea.”
Throughout the semester, students are responsible for evaluating the fund’s options (derivative securities) for the portfolio and individual securities as well as news and analyst reports that relate to the portfolio and investments—not your average day in a college classroom.
Dicle has added to the learning experience this year by putting together a Facebook group (restricted to current and past students of the class). This group allows for sharing of analysis/ evaluation, news, comments, and discussion on current and possible investments by current students and alumni. Dicle says that alumni who work in the industry have been a significant resource for his current students.
Recent graduate Valentin Riebesell ’17 (finance, economics, and accounting) says the class allowed him to put skills learned in prior classes into application:
“This class deepened my understanding of actual market dynamics and how to manage a portfolio for optimization. Having a professor with work experience in the finance field guiding the discussion is an invaluable resource, as well.”
View the full article and the current issue of the Loyola Executive Magazine here: https://issuu.com/loyola-university-new-orleans/docs/loyola_executive_ma...
For more information about the Finance degree program visit: http://business.loyno.edu/finance