Gatton College CFA Research Challenge Team Heads to Boston for International Investment Competition

CFA Challenge logo

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 7, 2018) The University of Kentucky’s CFA Research Challenge Team, out of Gatton College of Business and Economics, won the 10th annual CFA Regional competition and will continue to soar as it heads to CFA Americas Competition, March 19-20, in Boston, Massachusetts.

The university’s team competed in the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) Society of Louisville’s regional competition where it beat out such local universities as University of Louisville, Indiana University Southeast and Centre College this February, at the Pendennis Club of Louisville. The team is made up of four Gatton students: Joseph Back, Camden Booker, Tyler Harris and Kevin Short. The team’s faculty adviser is Will Gerken, assistant professor of finance, and their industry mentor is Jeff Thomison from Hilliard Lyons

Prior to winning the Local Research Challenge in Louisville, the university’s research team put in hundreds of hours of preparation. Teams are assigned a local publicly traded company and asked to recommend whether to buy, sell or hold on stock and the group is then required to write a fundamental analysis report, as well as prepare an oral presentation and Q&A session to present to a panel of judges. This year’s company was Louisville-based YUM! Brands. The judges included local investment professionals.

The win at the Local Research Challenge made the team eligible to compete on a larger scale in the CFA Americas Competition in Boston, Massachusetts. CFA Americas Competition will host 53 teams from universities in North and South America, giving the University of Kentucky the opportunity to compete internationally and showcase its investment talents to top industry experts.

“The team has already put in hundreds of hours preparing the written document and oral presentation,” Gerken said. “We will continue the preparation by keeping abreast of developments in the stock, as well as addressing the concerns of the local judges.”

UK has been taking part in CFA Research Challenge Team competitions since its inception in 2008. In those 10 years, the university has won the CFA Society of Louisville region competition three times in 2012, 2014 and 2018. CFA is a charter professional designation granted by the CFA Institute. It certifies the competence and integrity of financial analysts and is highly valued in careers of portfolio management and research analysis. 

The UK CFA Research Challenge Team’s competition will take place at the Westin Copley Place in Boston. 

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