One month to go – too close to predict the winning team?
With just one month to go, the students in the shares4schools competition will be desperately trying to find any last minute profit making opportunities to boost their position in the national league table. The leading school, The Grange in Buckinghamshire is currently just a 0.1% lead ahead of the winning school from the 2015/16 competition, Kingdown School in Warminster*.
When comparing the trading activities of the students at the start of the competition to those in March, it’s interesting to see that their appetite for risk has grown considerably. Their developed confidence is reflected in the increased number of trades in AIM listed companies as during the first month of the competition just 11% of the stocks the students invested in were listed on this market. In comparison, 25% of trades made by the pupils in March were in AIM listed stocks**. This perhaps demonstrates that at this late stage of the competition students are prepared to embrace companies with higher risk levels as they seek greater returns in a last minute attempt to claim the winning title.
Furthermore, the companies the students are investing in have evolved from the start of the competition. Initially the young investors sought stocks that were familiar to them with strong brands and those that reflected their interests, such as BOOHOO.com. As the competition has evolved, the pupils have explored a wider range of companies including Eland Oil & Gas and the chemical company Velocys. This further echoes the sense that the students are growing in confidence and in their own understanding of the mechanisms of the stock market as they opt for companies that they are less acquainted with.
The students will be hoping that their efforts will bear fruit in time for the end of the competition in May when one school will be crowned the winner. Not only will the winning school get to take the title, it has also been confirmed that the winning team will attend a special event in June at the London Stock Exchange in which the budding investors will have to ring the bell to open the stock market for the day. Furthermore, leading fund managers from well-known fund houses including Rathbones and Investec will be present to impart their investment knowledge to the students.
As schools try to mitigate any losses and boost profit gains, could Theresa May’s call for a general election impact the student’s chances of victory?
Shares4Schools is a competition organised by The Share Centre, a leading retail stockbroker. Established in 2003 this unique competition brings Economics and Business Studies to life as teams of students invest real money in the stock market. Each team must raise an investment pot of £1,500 to invest in the stock market, with the aim of achieving the greatest profit over the period October to May. Schools are encouraged to raise the initial investment through sponsorship from local businesses and The Share Centre. Schools interested in registering for the 2016/17 competition should contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
**Data analysed between 01.03.17 – 31.03.17