Portfolio Competition


Application Form

Please email the application to traderjackminer@gmail.com

Thanks for entering the Trader Jack Schools Portfolio Competition. The deadline for the application is 14 March, 2012. At the end of the 12 months ended March 2013, the winning school will receive £600, Second place, £400 and third £200. We suggest that 80% of the prize money is allotted to the school library to encourage reading and the remaining 20% be awarded to members of the successful teams. Schools, however, have the ultimate choice on how to share the proceeds between the library and pupils. No strings are attached i.e. there are no entry or other fees for the competition. It is completely independent from investment banks, fund managers and other firms in the financial world. The aim of the competition is to determine whether school boys and girls in GCSE, AS level or A level classes can beat the financial professionals in their choice of a share portfolio. The competition is open to all students, not just those who are studying economics and business. (Please note that the competition relates to a choice from the top 100 shares in the FTSE100 index and not to companies in the FTSE250 index as reported in the press.)

Section One:- School and Team details
School name, address, email and phone numbers  
Team i.e. GCSE,AS, or A level class or school club or society  
Teacher in charge & contact details  
Number of students in the team  
Do members of the team study economics or business?  
If not what are the main relevant subjects of the teams?  (maths, science, English, History, Geography, psychology)  
Has anyone in the team invested money in the share market?  
If so, when did you begin?  
Examples of investment books you have read  




Section Two:- Choose six shares for your portfolio. The shares in an initial, notional fictitious portfolio of£100,000  are a 12 month investment i.e. they cannot be changed during this period. You must choose the shares from the 100 listed companies in the FTSE100 index of top quoted companies. A list of the shares can be found on the London Stock Exchange website at:- http://www.londonstockexchange.com/exchange/prices-and-markets/stocks/indices/summary/summary-indices-constituents.html?index=ASX&page=2 The team can value the portfolio at the end of each quarter and if it is doing well, you can submit it to traderjackminer@gmail.com  . We may then publicise the results. The final results for the prizes are at March 31, 2013.
List prices of shares chosen  from Top 100 shares in FTSE 100 index as at April 2 2012: Number of shares Price (pence) Value of shares  
At the end of following quarters you can submit progress to traderjackminer@gmail.com by the middle of the following month. Total value of shares Performance positive or negative
June 30 2012      
September 30 2012      
December 28 2012      
Competition End Date March 31, 2013      


Section Three- Background of the Competition and Conditions

New End Books Ltd, publisher of Trader Jack-The Story of Jack Miner, is sponsoring the competition on behalf of author Neil Behrmann. He is conducting an experiment to see whether teenage school boys and girls can outperform professional investors (for more details see   http://www.thestoryofjackminer.com/?page_id=63 .  This is an investment, not a trading portfolio as the other part of the experiment is to see whether medium to long term holdings beat hedge funds that are trading all the time.

Neil’s CV and journalist and author track record are on neilbehrmann.net and www.thestoryofjackminer.com. He is a financial journalist, columnist and author and wrote for the Wall Street Journal for more than two decades. Major stories that Neil scooped provided him with the background to Trader Jack (see reviews of the book). Selected articles of Neil are on neilbehrmann.net. If you wish to contact Neil with any questions please email traderjackminer@gmail.com  He can also place you on his newsletter which updates subscribers on latest published articles.

The conditions for the prizes are as follows:-  

(a)The value of six shares in a notional, fictitious £100,000 portfolio must be chosen out of the top 100 listed British shares. They should beat the performance of the FTSE100 index over 12 months from 2 April  2012 to the end of March 2013.

(b)The portfolio’s return must be positive in absolute terms. Thus, for example, if the FTSE 100 index falls by 15% and the best performing school is even or down by only 1%, it will not be a winner. If the winning school portfolio rises by 1% or more and the FTSE100 is down, the team is the winner.

(c) Members of the team should not ask investment bankers, fund managers or anyone else in the financial services industry to choose their shares for them. If this condition is broken, the school will be automatically disqualified.

Section Four – Research and basic ways to pick stocks

(a)    Your team must carry out their own independent research e.g. media, Internet, economic, business sector, and company reports, brokers analysis and charts of individual share price performance.

(b)   Chapter 6 “Fishing For Gold” in Trader Jack illustrates the variables that investors must assess in carefully evaluating shares before choosing them. See www.thestoryofjackminer.com  for investment techniques.

(c)    Fundamental analysis:-  A solid investment technique is to pick companies that you know. If the management have good track records and the businesses have growing revenue and profits and are not over borrowed, the shares are potential choices.

(d)   Timing:-  The next step is to estimate the values of the shares. If charts show that the shares have soared, their prices could be discounting good news. Despite excellent profits, the share price could fall. Similarly charts can show that shares of good companies may be oversold and could be a buying opportunity. 

(e)   Risks and rewards:-  Your team must be continually aware of the opportunities and dangers of share investment.  Regard the £100,000 as if it were their own money or an investment on behalf of your families, friends or pensioners.  The competition is thus aimed at teaching you how make responsible investment decisions and discuss ideas.

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