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Gaining investment insights through an innovative Stock Market Competition.
What would you do if you had a million francs to invest? This is the question posed to Hotel Institute Montreux’s Bachelor of Business Administration in Hospitality Management students who have chosen to specialize in Financial Analysis and Wealth Management.
Thanks to the school’s partnership with Banque Privée Edmond de Rothschild, students gain hands-on experience investing in Swiss stocks and bonds, preparing them for their futures as industry leaders and giving them valuable insights into portfolio management and risk assessment.
Edmond de Rothschild is an independent, family-controlled financial group specializing in Private Banking and Asset Management, with more than 250 years’ experience in the finance world. The group embraces an entrepreneurial spirit, and this partnership, which includes masterclasses hosted by Edmond de Rothschild (Suisse), reinforces Hotel Institute Montreux’s commitment to bringing the real world into the classroom. "Being able to speak to students about your work and giving them insights into what could perhaps be their future career is a privilege," shares Adrian Gutknecht, Banque Privée Edmond de Rothschild (Suisse) Portfolio Manager.
While many bachelor’s programs focus only on corporate finance, Hotel Institute Montreux’s finance specialization students are also taught about financial markets, giving them a competitive edge when entering the workforce or setting up their own venture.
Being able to speak to students about your work and giving them insights into what could perhaps be their future career is a privilege.
Learning through doing
Each term, during lecturer Denis Klotz’s Portfolio Management class, students—working in teams of two or three—receive an imaginary CHF 1,000,000 to invest in Swiss stocks and bonds.
Edmond de Rothschild (Suisse)’s Portfolio Managers provide each student with an Excel spread sheet that includes a list of Swiss stock and a short description of each company. Each week, students choose how to allocate their budget amongst the different stocks and at the end of that week Edmond de Rothschild (Suisse)’s Portfolio Managers send through the week’s stock prices to add to their Excel sheet, formulated to automatically calculate their performance. This way, students get to put into practice the knowledge they have gained during their Portfolio Management class, and assess which approach works in their favor.
Students also participate in two masterclasses hosted by Edmond de Rothschild (Suisse): one on portfolio management by Adrian Gutknecht, and another on wealth planning and patrimonial strategy by Jean-Philippe Kraft, who adds, "This is a great opportunity to exchange information with very promising students from all over the world.".
Gaining in-depth knowledge of the market
The key learnings students gain through this Stock Market Competition include risk assessment and management, asset allocation, how to effectively research and assess financial markets and economies, and managing the sense of greed, which may lead to poor, risky decision-making. It also gives them an in-depth knowledge of the Swiss stock market.
The response from students has been overwhelmingly positive, with many highlighting the value gained from this virtual hands-on trading experience, and how it has given them a deeper understanding of the macroeconomic environment and the various Swiss public companies in different industries and sectors.
This competition is giving me great training to better understand and assess risky markets, and the insights I would need if I chose to enter this field in my future career.
One student highlights, "Having access to Edmond de Rothschild (Suisse)’s private weekly market reports is a real privilege and is an excellent tool to help my team make wiser decisions. This competition is giving me great training to better understand and assess risky markets, and the insights I would need if I chose to enter this field in my future career. I am grateful to Hotel Institute Montreux and Edmond de Rothschild for this great opportunity."
Importantly, this learning through gamification assignment also helps break the myth that you need to be a trader to take control of your finances, and gives students the expertise to engage with confidence in conversations around stock markets and trading. Nowadays, almost everyone has access to online trading, and this knowledge gives students skills they can use to invest at a lower scale for their own personal gain.
At the end of the term, the group with the best investments will be offered a prize by Edmond de Rothschild (Suisse).
Read more about why private banks are keen to work with hospitality management students.