The Falls School of Business at Anderson University has announced upgrades to its three-year Raven Investment Fund that will allow students to trade in real time during their class session as well as make certain types of derivative trading.
Students enrolled in the undergraduate classes Investments and Portfolio Management and graduate-level Accounting and Financial Management in the International Economy classes manage real dollar investments while earning academic credit. [Photo on left: The AU Raven Fund team won the portfolio style category at the RISE (Redefining Investment Strategy Education) conference held at the University of Dayton on March 18-20. Click here for more information on the RISE Conference.]
“The goal of the Raven Investment Fund is for students to get practical hands-on experience managing a portfolio of real dollar investments,” said Dr. Kent Saunders, professor of finance and economics.
Anderson University supports the program through the entrustment of $210,000 of invested capital over the past 3 years. Saunders reported the fund totaled $223,984 at the end of third quarter 2009, a better performance than the market in all ten of its investment categories during the same year.
Student investors, along with Saunders, recently upgraded the account to operate through a TD Ameritrade account. “We are now able to conduct transactions live during class,” said Saunders.
Also new this year is the ability to write covered calls to generate income on stocks where the fund holds at least 100 shares, the ability to buy protective puts to provide insurance against stock losses, and the ability to make options transactions.
Senior Julie Bynum, an accounting and finance major at AU, said the fund has given her important hands-on experience in the world of finance. “Before, we have only been taught which formulas and ratios to look at in evaluating a stock,” she said. “Now the class is able to interpret these formulas and statistics in a real life situation. With the Raven Investment Fund we are making actual decisions with real money that we have invested in the market. This is truly a hands-on experience.”
With the success of this hands-on learning program, the Falls School of Business hopes to develop a trading classroom with computer workstations that have the latest software and technology available for finance and investment classes. The long-term goal for the fund is to manage a portfolio with $1 million of invested capital. Additionally, Saunders hopes funding will be available to create different funds with different investment objectives such as long-term growth, international, income, and small cap.
Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,700 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson continues to be recognized as a top Christian college: in 2009, U.S. News and World Report ranked Anderson University among the best colleges and universities in the Midwest for the sixth consecutive year. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, education, music, nursing and theology. Falls School of Business is one of Anderson University’s largest academic departments offering eight undergraduate majors as well as MBA and DBA programs. The school is accredited by the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) and is a member of the Christian Business Faculty Association (CBFA).