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Students get chance to buy low, sell high

From left to right: Zachary Ferreira, Chad Wagner, Sanpras Furtado, and John Lorenzo(From left to right: Zachary Ferreira, Chad Wagner, Sanpras Furtado, and John Lorenzo)

With the ring of the opening bell, a group of University of Guelph-Humber Business students had a chance to see what it’s like to buy low and sell high. The team of four traveled recently to Concordia University in Montreal where they were given virtual money to take part in the John Molson Stock Exchange Simulation.

The simulation, which drew hundreds of students from across Canada and the US, had participants take part in an open cry system out on a trading floor. With their hands full of stock tickets, people were shouting “buy” and “sell”, looking for someone to make a deal with.

“We weren’t sure what to expect when we started,” says Chad Wagner, a third-year student who took part in the simulation. “The team had a lot of fun, but things could get pretty competitive out on the trading floor.”

The simulation’s day was broken up into four parts, mirroring the quarters of the fiscal year, and the students were relayed fictional news stories which then had an effect on the market’s prices.

“We were told about wars breaking out, or a big company launching an IPO (Initial Public Offering). They were similar to the things you’d see in real life and they affected the price of our stocks,” says Mr. Wagner.

Though the UofGH team was steadily making money throughout the day, a sudden market crash near closing time spoiled their chances of winning.

“Our classes have taught us how the stock market works, about shorting and selling, but I don’t think there’s any course that can prepare you for a market to crash,” Mr. Wagner says. 

It was the team’s first year competing, but they hope to go back next year and take their chances again.

“I’m proud of how the team did, two of whom were in my Investment Finance course,” says Assistant Vice-Provost George Bragues, who traveled with the students to Montreal. “It was a little chaotic, and definitely boisterous, but I think they did a great job out there.”