Each year, Brighton alumnus Sam Baker (Business Administration BA(Hons) 2003), organises a financial trading competition to help business students sharpen their work skills. The annual OSTC Trading Challenge provides a unique opportunity for finance students to trade, in a virtual environment, through futures derivatives in a number of products including; commodities, equities and fixed income. Brighton students compete against students from the University of Sussex.
The prices, the news, the winning and the losing are real; the positions, profits and losses are imaginary. The Trading Challenge teaches students to make decisions under pressure, take calculated risks and experience the excitement of the trading floor.
Each student has unlimited funds to invest during three months of virtual trading. The student with the highest portfolio at the closing bell wins a trophy. As players are bombarded with information from live news feeds, the pressure to build a winning portfolio creates a fast-moving and exciting event.
The OSTC Brighton v Sussex Trading Challenge is the brainchild of Sam Baker, Managing Director of the Brighton branch of OSTC, a financial trading company which operates a specialised, fast and secure trading environment in financial markets around the world. Sam started working for the company after graduating from Brighton Business School in 2003 and has kept in touch with the university through his invaluable volunteering support.
Sam said: “As a business school alumnus it’s great to come back and work with the university. It’s a fantastic opportunity for students to get a feel for what being a trader is like. It also gives us a window to see the students that are really interested in a career as a trader and to then offer them the opportunity to become one.
“The game brings out the natural rivalry between the two universities and motivates the students to trade. The game is a great taster for students that want to learn about trading the world’s markets. It also serves as a great recruitment tool for us at OSTC.”
The competition took place at the University of Brighton’s Trading Room. Brighton Business School is one of just a handful of UK universities that has a fully equipped real-time trading room, with up-to-the-minute data from Reuters it helps recreate the pressure of a trading floor.
This year’s victors were the students from Brighton Business School. Sam hosted a special presentation evening on 29 March to celebrate their success and award prizes to the top 10 traders.
If like Sam, you are interested in enhancing our students’ experience and helping them develop their skills, please get in touch about volunteering opportunities with the University of Brighton. As Sam said, it is a great opportunity to spot talent for your future business.