Spotlight on the 2023 Summer Interns at Moran Wealth Management®
Moran Wealth Management® is committed to serving the next generation of financial professionals through educational sponsorships, leadership opportunities, and internships. Our objective is to better equip students for the workforce through practical and engaging assignments that span beyond the classroom. Over the course of eight weeks, our summer interns not only gained hands-on experience but participated in the thrilling “Market Watch Stock Challenge,” courtesy of DOW Jones MarketWatch.
Educational Pursuits Beyond the Classroom
The internship provided opportunities for students to work closely with our seasoned Portfolio Managers, diving deep into the “ins and outs” of financial modeling, markets, and portfolio development. This opportunity made it possible for the students to experience “a day in the life of an investment analyst” and see the practical applications of their classroom learning.
Market Watch Stock Challenge
The heart of the internship was the “Market Watch Stock Challenge,” a real-time simulation game. The simulation provided an interactive platform for our interns to gain real-world experience in the stock market without the risk. The goal of the simulation was for students to further understand portfolio creation, asset allocation, and industry trends through quantitative research. With strict rules including common stock trading, no short selling, no leverage, and no day trading, the interns were encouraged to be fully invested, record their rationale for each trade, and follow a comprehensive set of guidelines.
The Journey Through the Market
Through the challenge, the interns designed strategic action plans, collaborated with industry professionals, and applied creativity while adhering to the game’s rules. Their journey was marked by adaptation, reflection, and learning from both successes and mistakes.
- Ryan Hertzberg from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign started his investment journey by seeking stocks that had moved from a steady downward trend into a period of consolidation/sideways movement that was increasing and approaching a supply zone. Because this method included some high-volatile stocks, he specifically used Trading View’s ATR trailing stop loss line to take profits and its supply zone to manage losses. The only change to Ryan’s approach was to secure his gains: “I took some profits and parked the money in a treasury ETF, gradually shifting more money into there as the contest concluded.”
- Jordan Law of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill started with a value investing approach before embracing active trading. “I initially adopted a value investing approach, aiming for steady and conservative returns for the first six weeks. However, as week seven approached, my competitive spirit drove me to take a more aggressive stance, embracing short-term technological factors and delving into more active trading,” Jordan described.
- Andrew Nachamkin of Williams College made riskier moves, attempting diversification based on current news. “For the first 70% of the game, I followed a fairly disciplined, albeit risky, strategy. For the final 30%, I decided to redo my strategy. Coming off a big miss on a low float stock, where it effectively doubled and I sold at a loss, I began realizing how volatile these types of investments were,” Andrew recounted.
- Isabella Arias of Florida Gulf Coast University focused on upward momentum due to the simulation’s short time horizon. She used technical analysis to choose companies whose 50-day moving average was above the 100-day moving average. Considering the hype around AI, she invested in tech and biotech companies and the S&P 500. She explains, “I reassessed my portfolio and held about 5-6 names throughout the second half of the game, investing in crypto mining firms and highly volatile tech companies. That was when I finally saw myself in the green with my returns.”
Reflections from the Interns
The interns’ unique insights and lessons learned shaped their experience:
- Ryan Hertzberg: “Throughout the game, I learned how easy it is to be tempted to trade emotionally. I am glad I made rational decisions and refrained from impulsively pulling the trigger. While I didn’t secure the top spot in the competition, the valuable insights gained will guide my future stock trading endeavors.”
- Jordan Law: “This experience taught me the importance of aligning my strategy with my risk tolerance and financial goals, acknowledging that aggressive approaches may only sometimes be suitable. Designing an investment approach that matches my personality, financial situation, and risk appetite is crucial.”
- Andrew Nachamkin: “One big lesson I learned is cutting my losses early,” Andrew reflected, sharing a mistake where he bought two stocks post-spike, hoping for a discount, but then suffered losses. “Both times I bought them post-spike, thinking that I was purchasing a discount. However, both stocks never returned to even close to the value I bought them at, and after suffering a 10-20% loss I should have sold. Instead, I kept banking on them maybe recovering again, and lost 30-40% on each.”
- Isabella Arias: “I learned to have my own opinion on my investments through conducting proper research and due diligence, instead of simply trusting the masses. This competition was fun, but carried many important lessons that I could have only learned through practice and testing out my decisions. I believe it is a great introduction and simulation to investing that kept our team engaged and would highly recommend to future interns.”
Fostering the Next Generation of Professionals
Moran Wealth Management’s summer internship program has proven to be more than a theoretical exercise; it offered a genuine and realistic glimpse into the complex world of investment and financial management. While engaging in hands-on projects and real-world simulations, the interns were able to apply their classroom knowledge and grow their skills in an environment that prioritized learning over accolades.
For students interested in gaining practical experience and a better understanding of the financial industry, more information about upcoming internship opportunities can be found at www.moranwm.com. The doors of Moran Wealth Management® are open to those who seek to challenge themselves and take proactive steps toward a future in finance.