Bishop Luffa makes final in national stock exchange challenge

Year-13 students Ed Shawcross, Tom Grace, Dan Patterson and Archie Reynolds, making up the team  T.money
Year-13 students Ed Shawcross, Tom Grace, Dan Patterson and Archie Reynolds, making up the team T.money

Four teenagers from Bishop Luffa School in Chichester have qualified for this year’s IFS Student Investor Challenge final.

The school said it was ‘an amazing achievement’, especially with the high level of competition.

The annual game is designed to give students a basic understanding of the stock market. Teams of four make virtual trades from an initial sum of £100,000, with the aim of making as much money as possible.

Year-13 students Ed Shawcross, Tom Grace, Dan Patterson and Archie Reynolds, calling themselves T.money, won a place in the final eight, having been one of 500 teams to make it through to the semi finals from the initial 10,000 entries.

The team said the new strategic investor portfolio, which allowed only monthly trading, meant looking to long-term fluctuations.

“Our main strategy was to keep on top of business news. For example, large pharmaceutical mergers, covered by The Economist over Christmas, brought us a great yield.

“Overall, we didn’t make that much money, only up to the tune of £3,578.08 on top of the original £100,000. However, stock markets have taken a hit over the last few months, especially with China’s market having closed twice recently, so to make any money at all has been a challenge. The majority of teams competing ended up with less than they started with.”

They were placed at 143 out of 10,000, putting them in the top two per cent nationally.

The team had to complete a new task for the semi-finals, predicting the closing price of given assets over a period of four weeks. The boys adopted a high risk, yet high reward, strategy and finished in fifth place.

The top eight teams, from across the country, compete in a live final in London on Wednesday, April 27.

The Bishop Luffa team added: “We still have a long way to go and a lot of hard work ahead of us, if we wish to win the grand prize of a week trip to Wall Street, New York.

“We have all thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience and it has given us a much greater insight into the world of banking. I would definitely recommend this competition to students who have some interest in entering the financial sector.”

Staff at Bishop Luffa said the boys had a very stressful final week as the financial sector had proved difficult to predict, but it was an outstanding achievement to make fifth place and reach the final, as they were competing against the top independent schools in the country.

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