King William’s College “2013-14 Share Race” Finale

King William’s College and Thomas Miller Investment’s “Share Race” project came to a thrilling climax at the final presentation on 13th March in front of the Judging Panel and the College Principle, Martin Humphreys. This extra-curricular project saw around sixty sixth form students divided into teams and pitted against each other in a six month race, trading a virtual £100,000 portfolio in FTSE 100 (“Footsie”) stocks and giving regular presentations covering their strategy, stock positions and portfolio performance thus far. 

The techniques employed by the students included the ‘blind monkey’ which picked equity stocks at random; investment selection according to in-depth analysis of each company’s fundamentals; and use of technical trading rules aiming to trend-follow or buy on dips and sell on peaks. 

On the night, the prize for the project’s “best overall portfolio performance” went to team Green and Yellow, whose portfolio managed to gain +13.76% over the period compared to the Footsie’s +5.40%. The winning team members were: Andrew Vels, Fay Wilcox, Breeshey Evans, Declan Horrox, Connor Martin and Oliver Mealin. 

Their strategy of buying good companies on short term price dips ahead of product releases; and taking profits on highs to reinvest elsewhere just pipped the second place team, Brilliant Babes. The Babes meanwhile posted a gain of +13.39% with their blind monkey approach which picked stocks at random albeit with some diversification across the various business sectors. 

The “best overall investment strategy” prize went to the Dream Team (+7.54%), who used quantitative technical analysis to ride stock price trends; whilst “best presentations” was won by the Brilliant Babes who, despite their profession to be blind monkeys, impressed the judges by demonstrating intricate knowledge of their chosen stocks and glossy presentation graphics. 

To the disappointment of the students, the “wooden spoon” prize did not go to the staff team but rather team Better Late than Never whose portfolio was perhaps slightly unfortunate and managed to lose 2.46% of its value over the course of the Race. 

Riaan Riekert, Head of the Economics Department at King William’s College, commented that “it was fascinating to see how the teams reacted to the unique series of economic and geopolitical events which unfolded during the course of the Race.” Tom Richards, Director and Head of Private Investment Management (Offshore) at Thomas Miller Investment, offered his congratulations to team Green and Yellow and added that “he had been highly impressed with the efforts shown by all the Race’s students and was already looking forward to next year’s Race.”

Photo: Winning team - “Green and Yellow”, Martin Humphreys and Riaan Riekert (KWC), Tom Richards and Rita Harel (TMI).

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The value of your investment can go down as well as up, and you can get back less than you originally invested. Past performance or any yields quoted should not be considered reliable indicators of future returns. Prevailing tax rates and relief are dependent on individual circumstances and are subject to change.

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