GFC hosts GUST Finance Students Portfolio Management Competition
Dr. Abdulla AlFalah, GUST Adjunct Finance Professor conducted a series of “Portfolio Management” lectures at the Gulf Financial Center (GFC). The lectures were designed to teach students financial principles by simulating a stock market experience, and show them how to use software packages to measure risk and return of an individual and different class asset. Students were asked to work as a team, study targeted markets and asset classes, in order to construct their investment portfolios by selecting 5 assets from the entire US market. Interestingly, the teams were then challenged to outperform S&P500, an American stock market index, over a period of 8 weeks. This raised the level of competition between the teams, and taught them how to set a benchmark and evaluate their performance based on it.
GUST Adjunct Finance Professor, Dr. AlFalah, said: “I was impressed by the depth of analysis skills the students showed and their capability to run investment portfolios to try and outperform S&P 500; especially over the last two months which witnessed a significant drop in US stock market.”
The final session was held on December 11, 2018, where the groups shared the stocks they bought and weight allocated to each. They explained their investment strategy and highlighted the results in comparison to their expectations. The team with the highest portfolio sum included students Danah Alothman, Farah Alsager, Reem Zaabalawi, Rawan Boodai, Shahl Alhubail, and Sharifah Alghanim. In a joint statement, the winners said, “We carried out extensive research to put together a comprehensive portfolio that deserved to win first place. We developed a strategy that included tracking seasonality trends, past trends, forecasting future trends, and diversifying the portfolio. Our strategy and skills in selecting the right stocks allowed us to outperform the market while keeping our risk close to the base market risk.”
GUST’s GFC aims to provide students with the best tools to develop their competency in financial trading by coupling knowledge with skill.