A team of Olin students took third place in the Chicago Quantitative Alliance’s Investment Challenge, a year-long competition that requires students to apply stock selection and portfolio management skills in a simulated, real life hedge fund experience. Congratulations to the WashU Green Team: Chongyu Li, Siyong Chen, Yingan Yi, Yuanfang Liu, Yuming Lou, and Sahil Ghurye, captain, for their excellent finish.
“It pits you against other domestic and international business schools like Cornell, Columbia, Fuqua, Tepper, CUHK, ISB, Georgia Tech etc.,” said Sahil Ghurye. “This year 50 colleges took part in the competition.”
Rich Ryffel, Senior Lecturer in Finance has organized and mentored Olin teams for the CQA competition for the past two years. “The objective of the CQA Investment Challenge is to successfully manage an equity long/short market neutral portfolio over the course of the academic year,” Ryffel explained. Kirk MacDonald, a Senior Research Analyst at Argent Capital Management served as the team advisor.
“It gave us a great opportunity to apply classroom theories to a simulated real world setting,” said Ghurye. “The competition helped us follow the public markets and factor recent macroeconomic trends that might affect our portfolio. We had to monitor our portfolio often to stay within the constraints set by the challenge.”
The winning team was determined by the combination of their absolute return, risk adjusted return and an evaluation of a strategy presentation with an emphasis on the risk adjusted returns. Prizes include $3,000 in prize money distributed across the top three teams ($1500, $1000, $500).
Ghurye and his fellow finance quant team members encourage other students to compete in the CQA. “I would certainly recommend the CQA challenge to students who aspire to work in finance. The challenge doesn’t take too much of your time but it gives you great exposure to public markets and to great mentors.” Another perk, Ghurye adds: “The CQA challenge looks good on your resume and is a great conversation starter in interviews.”
What is the Chicago Quantitative Alliance (CQA)?
The CQA is a professional investment organization comprised of leading quantitative investment practitioners. The CQA membership includes investment managers, academics, plan sponsors, consultants, and other investment professionals. The primary goal of the CQA is to facilitate the interchange of ideas between quantitative professionals.