Penn State Altoona

Winner of Student Trading Club Competition Receives $500 Award

Thursday, April 10, 2014 - 1035 hits

Nikolay Ovchinnikov, a first-year student from Krasnoyarsk, Russia, is the winner of the 2014 spring semester Penn State Altoona Trading Club competition. Ovchinnikov, who plans to major in finance, earned the first-place award of $500. He expanded his portfolio by more than $77,000 over two months of virtual trading. His return of 30.96 percent is a new Trading Club record. Ka Wai Siu, a marketing major from Germantown, Maryland, earned the $350 award for second place. Third-place finisher Destan Gerhard, a sophomore from Emmaus, Pennsylvania, majoring in economics, won the $250 award.

“Students traded stocks, bonds, mutual funds, options, and futures and spot contracts for world currencies and commodities on more than twenty global exchanges,” says Robert E. Belsterling, Trading Club advisor. “The top six finishers grew their portfolios by at least $10,000. To put things in perspective, the overall increase in the S&P 500 during the trading competition period was approximately 6.15 percent. The first and second place winners both had returns of more than three times the rate of growth in the S&P 500, and our third place winner had a return of more than twice the S&P 500 rate of growth.”

The Trading Club competition provides students with opportunities to manage an investment portfolio on a virtual trading platform while acquiring a broader understanding of how financial markets function. Participants acquire a personal understanding of capital markets through simulated investments. All Penn State Altoona students are eligible to register for the competition, regardless of major. The spring competition included forty participants.

Funding for the Trading Club’s awards is made possible through the ongoing philanthropic support of Dr. Carroll P. and Diane S. Osgood, of Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania. Awards totaling $1,500 were presented to the ten students with the highest portfolio values on the final day of trading. Each award was based on a student’s ranking on the virtual trading platform. All awards are credited to the students’ Penn State accounts to defray educational expenses.


Photo caption: The top ten finishers in the Penn State Altoona Trading Club competition celebrated their achievements during an awards ceremony in the Sheetz Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence. Left to right are: (front row) Dr. Carroll Osgood and Diane Osgood, Trading Club benefactors; Nikolay Ovchinnikov, first place winner; Mili Patel; Marisa DiBiase; Emily Patrylak; Ka Wai Siu, second place winner; (back row) Clayton Lukes; Paul Minninger; Patrick Albright; Brian Strauss; Destan Gerhard, third place winner; and Robert E. Belsterling, Trading Club advisor.

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