A team from Foreign Trade University Ho Chi Minh City has been named the winner of the fourth CFA Institute Research Challenge in Vietnam, the national final of the annual international competition considered as the “Investment Olympics” for university students. The team will represent Vietnam at the Asia-Pacific final in Manila, Philippines on March 11-12, 2015.
“The students from Foreign Trade University Ho Chi Minh City have demonstrated that they have what it takes to become professional research analysts. The finance industry is a challenging environment, and we need young people like them who possess the skills and knowledge as well as persistence, commitment, and ethical responsibility,” says Ms. Nguyen Hoai Phuong, CFA, representing CFA Institute members in Vietnam who organized the competition. “We wish them all the best in the regional final in Manila.”
Competing in the qualifying round were 75 students from 15 university teams, but only four advanced to final. The four finalist teams came from Foreign Trade University Hanoi campus, National Economic University, International University, and Foreign Trade University Ho Chi Minh City campus.
Their challenge was to provide investment research recommendations for the stock of Mobile World Group (HOSE – MWG) and present it to a panel of judges comprised of investment experts, namely: Mr. Nguyen Nhan Nghia, CFA, General Director and Chief Investment Officer of BIDV-Vietnam Partners Investment Management; Ms. Nguyen Thi Vinh Ha, CFA, Advisory Service Partner of Grant Thornton Vietnam; Mr. Nguyen Xuan Minh, CFA, Chairman, Techcom Securities; and Ms. Tran Thi Thu Hang, CFA, Investment Officer at International Finance Corporate (IFC), an investment arm of World Bank.
“We witnessed remarkable professional judgment and a high level of enthusiasm from the finalist teams. This bodes well for the future of the finance industry in Vietnam and the rest of Asia Pacific,” says Mr. Sunil Singhania, CFA, Chief Investment Officer of Asia Pacific at Reliance Mutual Fund in India and Member of the Board of Governors of the CFA Institute. “CFA Institute believes in the benefits of working with the academic community through the Research Challenge to help prepare the best and brightest students in each country for the rigor and responsibility of the finance profession.”
The CFA Institute Research Challenge, now on its ninth year, provides university students with hands-on mentoring and intensive training in financial analysis. Students work in teams to research and analyze a publicly traded company.
Each team writes a research report on their assigned company with a buy, sell, or hold recommendation and shall defend their analysis in front of a panel of industry professionals. In 2013-2014, more than 3,700 students from 825 universities in 58 countries worldwide participated in the competition. The 2015 global final will be held in April in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.
Meanwhile, a ceremony for new CFA charterholders was held following the Research Challenge final with the witnesses from Mr. Nguyen Thanh Long, Vice-chairman of the State Securities Commission as guests of honor. Thirty six individuals were awarded the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation in a ceremony in Hanoi.
To earn the CFA designation, candidates must pass three levels of rigorous exams, fulfill four years of work experience, and abide by the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct. There are about 21,000 CFA charterholders in Asia Pacific, more than 100 of them in Vietnam.
CFA Institute is the global association of investment professionals that sets the standard for professional excellence and credentials. The organization is a champion for ethical behavior in investment markets and a respected source of knowledge in the global financial community. The end goal: to create an environment where investors’ interests come first, markets function at their best, and economies grow. CFA Institute has more than 127,000 members in 150 countries and territories, including 120,000 Charterholders, and 144 member societies.
CFA Institute Research Challenge
The CFA Institute Research Challenge is an annual global competition that provides university students with hands-on mentoring and intensive training in financial analysis. Students work in teams to research and analyze a publicly traded company — sometimes even meeting face-to-face with company management. Each team produces an initiation-of-coverage report on their assigned company with a buy, sell, or hold recommendation and shall defend their thesis in front of a panel of industry experts. For more information about the competition in Vietnam, please visit www.researchchallenge.vn.
The 2014 – 2015 CFA Institute Research Challenge Local Final in Vietnam was made possible through the corporate sponsorship from the following companies: Kaplan Schweser (Global Platinum Sponsor), Hoang Anh Gia Lai Joint Stock Company (Gold Sponsor), AFTC Training Consultancy and Investment Ltd. (Gold Sponsor); and Techcom Securities and Techcom Capital (Silver Sponsor).
Universities in Vietnam that participated in this year’s competition include:
- From Hanoi: Banking Academy, Foreign Trade University (Hanoi campus), Hanoi University, National Economics University, FPT University Team, Posts & Telecommunications Institute of Technology, University of Economics & Business
- From Ho Chi Minh City: Banking University, Hoa Sen University, International University, Vietnamese German University, Foreign Trade University (Hanoi campus), RMIT International University Vietnam, University of Economics, University of Economics & Laws
About AFTC Training Consultancy and Investment Ltd.
As the only Vietnam participant in the CFA® Prep Provider Guidelines Program, AFTC provides training courses on all three levels of the CFA® exams in both Hanoi and HCMC. AFTC’s mission is to bring up the local Financial Services Industry to international standards, in terms of professional competence and ethics.
About Hoang Anh Gia Lai Joint Stock Company
Being one of the leading private Groups in Vietnam mainly operating in 2 branches including Agribusiness and Real Estates, as well as expanding the business to other countries in the region such as Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Thailand, etc., HAGL Group commits to continuously work hard, innovate and strive to provide high-quality products and services at competitive prices. Besides, the Group implements satisfactory remuneration both physically and morally so as to encourage all the employees to create new values to its clients, shareholders and the whole society.
About Techcom Capital and Techcom Securities
Techcom Capital Ltd Co. (Techcom Capital) and Techcom Securities Ltd Co. (Techcom Securities) are fully owned subsidiaries of Techcombank, which is among the leading joint-stock bank in Vietnam. Techcom Capital provides comprehensive industry insights and in-depth company analysis in Vietnam, managing over US$30 million equity and structured products. Techcom Securities offers investment banking services, financial management, online securities and various others finance services with more than US$1 billion local currency corporate bond arrangement in 2014. The team comprises of over 40 local and international professionals, who total has over 150 years of investment and banking experience in Vietnam and overseas financial markets.