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Henry Fund Wins Student Stock Portfolio Competition

A stock portfolio managed by University of Iowa MBA students recently earned top honors in a national competition of student-run funds.

The Henry Fund, managed by 12 students from the Tippie School of Management, won first place in the graduate category for large-cap equity blend portfolios. The competition was held in conjunction with the Redefining Investment Strategy Education (RISE) Forum on March 31 at the University of Dayton.

Twelve month risk-adjusted returns from 2005 were used to determine the winners in the areas of growth, value, blend, alternative and fixed income styles of portfolio management. The Henry Fund returned 12.53 percent in 2005, outperforming the S&P 500, which was up 4.91 percent for the year.

Todd Houge, an assistant professor of finance in the UI's Tippie College of Business and Henry Fund advisor, attended the RISE conference with MBA students Todd Nelson, Jonathan Perez, Rijo Oommen, David Schreindorfer, Erik Christensen, and Daryn Suharto, along with three undergraduate students, Scott Hirleman, Zach Olson, and Hayes Olofson.

In addition to the portfolio contest, the Henry Fund students also participated in a poster-board session that was well received by conference attendees. Nelson and Perez also gave a Henry Fund portfolio presentation to a panel of four investment professionals. The panel commented that they delivered the best presentation of the day and was also impressed with Nelson's research report on Lowe's Companies, Houge said.

"One member noted that the depth of fundamental research conducted by the other groups that they heard from pales in comparison to what our students are doing in the Henry Fund," Houge added.

RISE is the largest student investment education conference in the world. Approximately 1,000 students and 400 financial professionals from across the U.S. and the world attended the event, which included open forum panel discussions from 75 different investment, regulatory and economic professionals.

"This was a great opportunity for students to listen to a variety of practitioners from all areas of investments, as well as being a great opportunity to showcase our programs," Houge said.

Named for its two founding benefactors, Henry Royer and Henry B. Tippie, the Henry Fund is an endowed equity portfolio that invests in companies that are industry leaders with above-average investment opportunities. Managing the fund provides MBA students enrolled in the Applied Securities Management course with hands-on experience investigating and recommending stocks. Each of the 12 analysts works within one or more economic sectors and is responsible for developing an investment review, researching new companies to purchase, and evaluating the buy/sell recommendations of other managers. Henry Fund alumni have secured excellent positions at investment firms and in corporate finance.


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