Prince Sultan UniversityPSU finance students invest in their future with success in Bloomberg Global Trading Challenge

PSU finance students invest in their future with success in Bloomberg Global Trading Challenge

The finance team from the College of Business Administration impressed on the world stage after showcasing their investment skills

Finance students at Prince Sultan University were ranked among the world’s best after an impressive performance in the Bloomberg Global Trading Challenge.

Nearly 500 university teams entered the challenge, in which PSU’s male and female teams placed first and second, respectively, in the MENA region. Globally, the male team finished second and the female team finished sixth.

The challenge tasks teams to invest a virtual $1 million and, using Bloomberg’s Terminal, design and construct a share portfolio capable of delivering the maximum returns within a seven-week period.

The teams, led by a faculty adviser, had to evaluate risk and return, closely follow their chosen stocks and, when necessary, effectively rebalance their portfolios. After seven weeks, the male PSU team generated an impressive 40.48 per cent absolute return from their portfolio.

The male team was supervised by Chaker Aloui, a professor in PSU’s finance department, who said the challenge had given students valuable insight into what it’s like to trade in a real market setting.

“It was a great way to show our students the gap between the academic side and the real world. They learned about how to allocate assets, investment strategies and the portfolio investment process,” Aloui said. “The management of global portfolios now is very complicated given international news and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Our students had to pick the best stocks to allocate to their portfolios and rebalance their portfolios in order to achieve the highest realised return. Volatility is there and risk is there, and they had to manage their portfolios in real time. It was a great challenge and experience for our students.”

The PSU teams benefited from access to Bloomberg data to track their stocks on the College of Business Administration’s Bloomberg Terminal. Aloui advised the male team, while the female team was supervised by Noor Azizan, an assistant professor in the accounting and finance team at PSU.

Priyanka Aggarwal, associate chair of the department of finance, said: “ Faculty mentors were the facilitators and the students independently worked through the different stages of the challenge. A legacy is being maintained across all the programmes in the College of Business Administration, where the instructor is there to advise, guide and support them. We prepare our students to deal with the agility of the market, both as future asset managers and decision-making investors, so they are well prepared with the holistic knowledge that comes through the finance department’s intense curricula.”

Aloui said students’ extracurricular activities such as the Bloomberg Global Trading Challenge, combined with the CBA’s regularly updated curricula informed by industry engagement, helped graduates prepare for the market demands.

“They have the theoretical and conceptual background to manage portfolios and allocate assets in the local market and at the global level. The main objective of our finance programme is to prepare our students for the needs of the job here in the local market and globally,” Aloui said.

PSU’s male team members were Albdulaziz Aleisa, Waleed Alghurari, Ahmad Alhamdan and Ziad Alsuribi. The female team members were Leen Abahussain, Maha Alkhalsi, Aljoharah Alkosayyer, Fulwah Alrubaishi and Losan Jan.

Find out more about the College of Business Administration at PSU.

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