Financial Markets Team: Advances to Next Round

Hard work paid off for the student teams from LSBE’s Financial Markets Program that competed in an annual, local research challenge.

They're moving toward a global competition against students from around the world. 

Competing in the Upper Midwest local finals of the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Institute’s Annual Research Challenge, Trevor Dummer, Ethan Will, Sophie Scharin, and Dylan Ibarra earned the right to advance and compete virtually in the Midwest Sub-Regional round in March along with eight other winning teams from colleges in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Ohio, Michigan, and Wisconsin.

The team was one of two LSBE teams that competed in the Upper Midwest local finals of the CFA Challenge that was held February 23, virtually. (Originally scheduled to occur in Minneapolis, the event location was changed due to weather.)   LSBE’s second team was Jake Carlson, Jack Graff, Isaac Shelton, Alex Sturnieks, and Nico Vega.

For the CFA competition, teams conducted extensive financial analysis on the subject company, General Mills, Incorporated (GIS), which was selected by the Twin Cities’ CFA Society. The top six teams, judged accordingly by their written report, were invited to present and defend their findings to a panel of CFA charter-holding industry judges.

While both LSBE teams earned the right to defend their research and analysis on General Mills, only the team accumulating the highest aggregate score on its oral presentation and defense of the analysis advanced.  

“Both teams worked unbelievably hard and made many sacrifices along the way, practicing on weekends, holiday break, late nights, and early mornings, and the results showed,” said Joe Artim, director of the LSBE Financial Markets Program and the teams’ faculty mentor. “It’s unfortunate that only one of our teams advanced because both are very talented. I deeply admire that both teams worked independently and protected the integrity of their work in the competition.

“The true spirit of this competition further strengthens our resolve as a program, and we are again deeply honored to represent our program, school, university and CFA Minnesota at the Midwest Sub-Regional round!

“Since the beginning of LSBE’s involvement in the CFA Research Challenge in 2011, we have been blessed to attract and field many talented individuals who have gone on to do many amazing things in the program, their careers, and lives, which is beyond gratifying for me as the program director,” added Artim.

“Our teams have competed at all levels—from the local round through to the Global competition. The competition normally fields over 1,100 university teams each year, which attracts many of the world’s brightest and best young talents in Finance.”

Teams from LSBE have advanced to the local final each year and have captured seven titles in the past nine years. Teams have also finished runners’ up in the local final four times in the event’s 13-year history. The CFA Research Challenge is designed to help develop best practices for future investment professionals and provide the opportunity for experienced practitioners to give back to the industry’s next generation.


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