KO Students Invest in Wharton's Stock Market Competition - Kingswood Oxford

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October 17, 2023

KO Students Invest in Wharton’s Stock Market Competition

Move over Warren Buffett. KO has its own stock market oracles with a team of Form 4 students (Armann Dedania, Rishab Premish, Saahit Gaddapati, and Finn Ritcher) who are enrolled in the Wharton Global High School Investment Competition. The competition, which runs from September through December, is an experiential investment challenge for high school students who manage a portfolio of $100,000 in virtual cash. 

Kingswood Oxford students in West Hartford take initiative and enroll in Wharton business courses


“During the summer I was looking for extracurricular things to do throughout the school year and I found this competition. The first thing I did was text Rishab and set it up,” Dedania said.


The team learns about strategy building, teamwork, communications, risk, diversification, and company and industry analysis through the program. Rather than invest in a sea of over 40,000 companies, Wharton provides the teams with an Approved Stock & Exchange-Traded Fund (ETF) List of large, mid, and small-cap stocks from a variety of exchanges, sectors, and industries. The list is structured to support diversification and reinforce the importance of managing risk and smoothing out the volatility of investment returns.


The students said their strategy was to invest 30% of the portfolio into long-term stocks. Some of the blue-chip companies they invested in include Disney, JP Morgan, Costco, and Coca-Cola. 


“We chose Disney especially because the writers strike just ended,” Premish said. “We thought their business would come back, and we thought it was a good opportunity to invest in. It did pretty well!”


The students chart their stocks every day and meet during the common free period, community time, and before soccer games to discuss their portfolio’s performance. They shared they’ve sharpened their teamwork skills, and majority rules when making a stock pick. Although they’ve had their share of disagreements, they have learned from it. At one point, the team lost money on Amazon because the company was getting sued.


The students “trade” on Wharton’s WInS (Wharton Investment Simulator), a web-based stock market simulation that allows students to apply the concepts of investments and portfolio management in a hands-on learning environment while working with real-world data without risking real money. WinS runs just like any real-world trading platform. Each transaction is charged a flat $25 commission, only on a trade that clears. To tamp down any Wolves of Wall Street egregious impulses, margin or short selling is prohibited.


The students must provide a mid-term report in October and a final report in December. Wharton selects the winner not on the percentage of growth of their portfolios, but rather on the strength and articulation of their overall investment strategies and competition experiences.


Although the high school teams invest with virtual cash, Premish has experience in real-world investing, selecting tech companies that have a bright future.” He said he invested in Teslas a long time ago because he liked their electric cars. “I bought three shares at $600 each,” Premish said, “and they had a three-for-one split.”


The students’ portfolio is performing very well, and placed in the top 60 out of 4,000 teams; last week they were ranked 20 out of 4,000.

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