There was strong Keuka College representation when the opening bell was rung on the NASDAQ Stock Exchange this past Nov. 29. Keuka College students, from left, Michaela Martin, Luke Labuski, Patrick Giardino, and Hunter Waddington, along with Associate Professor of Finance Steven Barber, were on the floor of the exchange after winning top awards in an international investment competition. (Photo provided)
With financial markets going through turbulent times these days, the best investment advice to be found might just come from … Keuka College students.
The College boasted four of the top five performers in the competitive Spring 2018 ETF Global Portfolio Challenge. All four created portfolios that generated a return on investment of more than 30 percent – during a time when the market itself actually fell.
“Over the period of the challenge, the market went down 0.2 percent,” said Keuka College Associate Professor of Finance Steven Barber, who accompanied College students on a celebratory trip to the Fall ETF Forum in Manhattan, “so our returns were impressive!”
The portfolio challenge attracts students from across the country and around the world, with more than 1,000 participants representing 43 states and 36 countries. Still, Keuka College’s student-investors more than held their own, capturing nearly half of the top 20 spots:
1st Patrick Giardino ’18, management major (51.52% portfolio return)
2nd Trevor Alton ’18, accounting major (46.60%)
4th Hunter Waddington ’20, management major (36.84%)
5th Michaela Martin ’19, management major, (33.40%)
6th Konrad York ’18, management major (31.58%)
10th Nicholas Cantando ’18, management major (25.24%)
11th Ryan Lawrence ’18, management major (21.01%)
13th Dakota Skinner ’17 management major (19.34%)
17th Luke Labuski ’19, accounting major (15.13%)
The competition requires students to invest a virtual balance of $100,000 in a portfolio of between four and 10 exchange-traded funds, which they then manage over the semester. Portfolios are measured by their total returns.
Several Keuka College winners attended the ETF Forum, the largest single-day conference in the industry, and were recognized on stage during the awards ceremony. They also enjoyed private networking sessions and a tour of the NASDAQ exchange, where they helped ring in the trading day on Nov. 29.
In addition, Professor Barber received a “Most Valuable Professor Award” for Excellence in Investment Education.