Words profit and Gain above Ben Franklin's image
Monday, October 23, 2017
Tom Snee

The Henry Fund, the University of Iowa’s student-managed equity portfolio, passed the $6 million mark in valuation for the first time this month, 23 years after it was established with $50,000 in capital.

The award-winning fund’s 11.25 percent average annual growth is more than 1.4 percent better than the 9.84 percentage growth of its S&P 500 benchmark since 1994. 

The Henry Fund is managed by 10 to 12 students enrolled in the Applied Management Securities class in the Tippie College’s Iowa MBA Program who plan to pursue careers in financial management. Each student analyzes a sector of the economy and offers recommendations to buy or sell companies, giving them practical experience managing a real-money investment fund. The fund targets U.S.-traded companies that are industry leaders with above-average investment potential.

“We have done well by focusing on long-term, fundamental valuation with a buy-and-hold philosophy of managing the portfolio,” says Todd Houge, a member of Tippie College’s finance faculty and the fund’s faculty advisor. “With a team of 10 to 12 analysts, we generally need strong, convincing arguments and research in order to convince the team to put something in the portfolio.”

Since 1999, the fund’s biggest one-year increase came in 2003, when it grew 37 percent. Its largest loss was the recession year of 2008, when it fell 38 percent in value. It then rebounded with a 34 percent increase in value in 2009.

Earnings from the fund are used to support the university’s educational programs. Over the last five years, $670,000 of the fund’s earnings were used to support student scholarships and campus programs.

The Henry Fund is named for Henry Tippie and Henry Royer, the two UI benefactors who provided a portion of the initial $50,000 in capital. Contributions from other supporters are welcome to increase the size of the Henry Fund. More information can be found online at www.henryfund.org.

Editor's Note: The Gazette (Cedar Rapids) ran a brief story about the Henry Fund's value.