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SU Finance Students’ Trip to NYC
By E. Tylor Claggett, Professor of Finance & Ani Manakyan, Assistant Professor of Finance

The group departed the Guerrieri University Center parking lot aboard a chartered bus at about 6:15 a.m. on Thursday, April 4. All students expected to be on the trip were present. The group consisted of two subgroups of students: 20 from the SU student chapter of the Financial Management Association (FMA) and 15 from the FINA 449 Practicum in Portfolio Management class. Three faculty members, all from the Perdue School accompanied the students: Drs. Claggett, Ervin and Manakyan. We arrived at the New York City Hilton Hotel in Manhattan at about 11:30 a.m.

After checking into three changing room and changing into more appropriate dress, the FMA students (plus Drs. Claggett and Ervin) departed and walked to the New York City offices of Wells Fargo, while the FINA 449 students reconvened for the afternoon session of the Quinnipiac Global Asset Management Education (GAME) Forum.

The FMA students and professors proceeded to the fixed-income floor escorted by Chris Tracy (SU ’06). The discussion with Tracy about career planning, current market conditions and the general future economic outlook was informative and enjoyable. Everyone felt it was value received. We said “good-bye” to our host around 4 p.m., but only after exchanging business cards and contact information. The students were free for the rest of the day to enjoy the city.

From 1:15-2:45 p.m., Dr. Manakyan and the FINA 449 students attended a keynote panel on corporate governance. The panelists* discussed a variety of topics, including the need for disclosure, treating all shareholders equally, the cost of SOX compliance and the decline in the number of publicly listed companies in the United States. The final keynote panel** of the day was from 3-5 p.m. and concerned global markets. The panel discussed topics ranging from the stability of the EU system to the emerging middle class in China. The panelists noted that in looking for emerging markets in which to invest, they look for those with sustainable GDP growth based on more than just exports. They look for an emerging middle class and a government that is willing to invest in education and services to drive the middle class. After the final panel, students were free to explore the city for the evening.

On Friday morning, the FMA students (plus Drs. Claggett and Ervin) traveled to J.P. Morgan in downtown Manhattan for a 9 a.m. appointment. Unfortunately, our regular annual host, Ronald (Ron) G. McGann (SU ’88), managing director, JPMorgan, The Private Bank, was on vacation during our visit. However, he arranged for us to be hosted by Catherine Wert. She talked with the students for 15-20 minutes about her duties, how she became a JPMorgan employee and about the general expectations related to professional positions within JPMorgan before introducing various guest speakers. These included junior analysts and a representative from the human resources (HR) department. The HR representative ended her formal remarks by giving several tangible and significant pieces of advice for searching for the first job and what the screening process is like at many first tier financial institutions. Our meeting ended with a lively question-and-answer session.

Friday afternoon was spent with a tour on the NASDAQ office site located on Times Square. Our host was Adam Messick (SU ’10). One highlight for everyone was seeing the Salisbury University logo up in lights on one of the giant screens at Times Square. We were present for the closing bell ceremony.

On Friday morning, for the FINA 449 students, the lead analysts coordinated the setup of the poster for the evening’s poster board competition. The GAME Forum resumed at 9 a.m. There were five sessions from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m., with breaks for coffee and lunch in between. Each session had approximately 10 panel discussions, keynote addresses or workshops from which to choose. Students were free to register for and attend those panels that they found most interesting throughout the day. From 4:30-5:30 p.m., there was a networking reception and awards ceremony in which all of the competing student-managed investments funds displayed their posters.

The FINA 449 students were able to view the posters of many other teams and discuss unique aspects of each investment fund with the students from other teams. Salisbury University was well represented by the work of the lead analysts. Many professors and students from other universities stopped to view and discuss our poster.

For the FINA 449 students, the GAME forum continued at 9 a.m. on Saturday morning. There were two sessions on Saturday, lasting until 11:30 a.m. Once again, each session contained a number of presentations to choose from and Dr. Manakyan and the students split up to attend those panels that held the most interest for each of them before checking out of the hotel at noon and preparing for a 1 p.m. departure. In total, the GAME forum had more than 110 keynote speakers, panelists, workshop presenters and student-managed portfolio judges from more than 80 firms.

Saturday was free time for the FMA students with respect to sight visits. At 1:15 p.m., our entire group departed the hotel and returned to SU’s Guerrieri University Center parking lot by about 6:15 p.m.

* The prestigious panelists were Al Angrisani, a turnaround specialist and current president, vice chairman and chief executive officer of Harris Interactive; Edward Knight, J.D., executive vice president, general counsel and chief regulator officer of the NASDAQ OMX Group; John D. Rogers, CFA, president and chief executive officer of the CFA Institute; and Irwin D. Simon, founder, chief executive officer, and chairman of the board of Hain Celestial Group.

** The panelists were Guy Adami, managing director of Drakon Capital and Fast Money contributor; Abby Joseph Cohen, CFA, senior investment strategist and president of Goldman Sachs Global Markets Institute; Jeffrey N. Kleintop, CFA, chief market strategist at LPL Financial; and Bob H. McCooey Jr., senior vice president of new listings and the Capital Markets Group at the NASDAQ OMX Group.

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