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Students make the stock market perform

BC Portfolio Management Challenge second place winners.April 2, 2009

A team of students from Camosun College’s School of Business won the Team Championship in the College Division of the 2008 / 2009 BC Portfolio Management Challenge competition with an average portfolio value of $1,120,000. Camosun came in second overall to the University of British Columbia Finance Club.

The BC Portfolio Management Challenge is a province-wide competition open to British Columbia universities and colleges with commerce/business programs. Teams put their finance and accounting skills to the test while managing one million dollars in hypothetical capital over five months. To win, the teams must outperform the S&P 500 index during the challenge period. The Camosun College team not only beat the index but actually made a profit during the same time period that the index reported a loss.

The Camosun team of 16 students, led by Finance Program Leader and instructor Mahesh Kumar, built a portfolio that resulted in taking first-place in the college division, and second-place overall. Last year, Camosun placed second overall as well.

“Bravo and congratulations to Camosun College for holding onto their second-place win yet again against tough competitors, and even tougher times,” says instructor and team leader, Mahesh Kumar. “Now that we’ve had an opportunity to come second-place twice in consecutive years, we’re poised to take the number one position in 2010!”

The BC Portfolio Management Challenge is sponsored by the investment management firms of Odlum Brown Limited and Leith Wheeler Investment Counsel Limited. The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Institute-Vancouver is also a sponsor. Brooke Campbell, the Managing Director of the BC Portfolio Management Challenge, will formally recognize the Camosun team at a wrap-up event at the college’s Interurban campus on April 1. Cash awards will be presented to top team performers, and letters of commendation will be awarded as well.

Brooke Campbell also applauds the Camosun business students. “These results are spectacular particularly because during the period of the competition - October 13, 2008 until March 6, 200 - the US S&P 500 Index in Canadian dollars was down 25% while that for the TSX Industrial Index was down 16%,” notes Campbell.

“College students across Canada are performing exceptionally well in test-case competitions such as this,” says Kumar.”And Camosun is up there with the leaders. The fact that Camosun and other colleges consistently rank high demonstrates that the focus on applied learning at colleges pays off - now, and in these students’ futures.” “Employers are seeking students with an edge, and participation in these types of competitions are great resumé builders,” adds Kumar.

First place in the BC Portfolio Management Challenge Competition was taken by University of British Columbia, second place by Camosun College, third by Vancouver Island University and Royal Roads University placed fourth.

The BC Portfolio Management Challenge Competition team from Camosun College included:

  • Elizabeth Taylor
  • Janele Halpenny
  • Mathieu Poirer
  • Conor Pomerville
  • Jeremy Beltgens
  • Graham Wilson
  • Pengfei Qu
  • Sarah Ferguson
  • Nick Scwender
  • Brian Lalli
  • Douglas Lawson
  • Nick Piluso
  • Heather Lane
  • Billy de Frias
  • Nathan Cartwright
  • Robert Ganzer
  • Jeff Syrja


Mahesh Kumar, Finance Program Leader
School of Business – Accounting and Information Systems

Last updated: April 15, 2009 9:14 am

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