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Université Laval wins 10th annual Rotman International Trading Competition

February 26, 2013

TORONTO, ON — A team of stu­dents from Uni­ver­sité Laval (Que­bec City) won the 10th annu­al Rot­man Inter­na­tion­al Trad­ing Com­pe­ti­tion (RITC) host­ed by the Rot­man School of Man­age­ment at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to. A team from Chu­la­longko­rn Uni­ver­si­ty (Thai­land) placed sec­ond, while stu­dents from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to and Baruch Col­lege (City Uni­ver­si­ty of New York) tied for third place. The BI Nor­we­gian Busi­ness School was fifth and LUISS Gui­do Car­li Uni­ver­si­ty of Rome placed sixth over­all.

More than 240 stu­dent traders, 29 fac­ul­ty advi­sors and 30 spon­sor rep­re­sen­ta­tives par­tic­i­pat­ed in the event which was held at the Rot­man School’s Finan­cial Research and Trad­ing Lab from Feb­ru­ary 21 to 23. The stu­dents rep­re­sent­ed 48 uni­ver­si­ties from Asia, Europe, Unit­ed States and Cana­da.

The com­pe­ti­tion fea­tured six dis­tinct trad­ing cas­es focus­ing on a diverse range of secu­ri­ties and mar­kets, includ­ing equi­ty shares, options, crude oil phys­i­cal prod­ucts and futures con­tracts, index futures con­tracts and even high fre­quen­cy trad­ing imple­ment­ed by com­put­er algo­rithms writ­ten by the stu­dents. Over the three day event, teams were able to demon­strate their abil­i­ty to under­stand and suc­cess­ful­ly exe­cute trad­ing, ana­lyst and risk man­age­ment strate­gies on a con­sis­tent basis. Teams were scored over many dif­fer­ent iter­a­tions of each case, and the final score was com­prised of their rank­ings across all of the cas­es.

The first place team was com­prised of stu­dents, Dave Doy­on, Jean-François Boilard, Pierre-Luc Nadeau, Olivi­er Tardif-Loiselle, Guil­laume Sévi­gny, François Bet­tez; the team’s fac­ul­ty advi­sor was Marc-André Picard; the sec­ond place team includ­ed Varor­ith Chira­chon, Lut­taw­it Pun­janut­bonkot, Pasan Tosi­riphatana, Phat­tradanai Samur­wong; their advi­sor was Suparatana Tan­thanongsakkun.

Tied for third place were teams from Baruch Col­lege and Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to. Baruch Col­lege was com­prised of 6 stu­dents, Ken­neth Chan, Juan Alon­so, Shix­i­ang Zhang, Yi Zhang, Andrew Chang and 2 fac­ul­ty advi­sors, Eugene Krel and Yike Lu. The Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to team was advised by Richard Gao with stu­dents from three dif­fer­ent pro­grams includ­ing: Yim­ing Chen (Mas­ter of Math­e­mat­i­cal Finance), Jonathan Dwek (Rot­man Mas­ter of Finance), Ste­fan Markovic (Rot­man Com­merce) and Christo­pher Xie (Rot­man Mas­ter of Finance).

In the competition’s com­modi­ties case, spon­sored by BP, the top teams were the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to, LUISS Uni­ver­si­ty (Rome) and Uni­ver­sité Laval. Stu­dents took on the roles of pro­duc­er, refin­er and traders to trans­act crude oil and refine it to heat­ing oil and gaso­line. Besides arbi­trag­ing across prod­uct type, they had to react to news-releas­es such as stor­age out­ages and hedge their risks in futures mar­kets.

The Sales and Trad­er results were led by the Uni­ver­si­ty of Chica­go, Chu­la­longko­rn Uni­ver­si­ty (Thai­land) and Baruch Col­lege (CUNY). The sales and trad­er case was designed to test the com­peti­tors abil­i­ty to trans­act lia­bil­i­ty trades and unwind large blocks of shares into a mar­ket­place while judg­ing mar­ket impact and oth­er mea­sures of liq­uid­i­ty risk. Traders had mul­ti­ple mar­ket­places to trans­act their shares with dif­fer­ent liq­uid­i­ty and cost struc­tures.

The Thom­son-Reuters Merg­ers and Acqui­si­tions case test­ed com­peti­tors’ abil­i­ty to track var­i­ous ‘in-play’ M&A deals and devise risk-tak­ing strate­gies to gen­er­ate prof­its. Suc­cess in this case depend­ed on teams’ skill at assess­ing poten­tial tar­gets and prob­a­bil­i­ties of suc­cess­ful M&A deals. The top schools in this case were Chu­la­longko­rn Uni­ver­si­ty, Uni­ver­sité Laval, with Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to and Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­gary tied for third.

The Algo­rith­mic case, spon­sored by CIBC, was won by the Chu­la­longko­rn Uni­ver­si­ty, fol­lowed by LUISS Uni­ver­si­ty and Baruch Col­lege. This case required traders to build and exe­cute an algo­rithm capa­ble of bal­anc­ing price and liq­uid­i­ty risk, while prof­it­ing from the bid-ask spread.

The Quan­ti­ta­tive Out­cry case, involved trad­ing index futures in response to gov­ern­ment macro-eco­nom­ic data releas­es. This out­cry event is tru­ly unique in the com­pe­ti­tion due to the fact that traders com­mit their trans­ac­tions direct­ly with each oth­er through an “out­cry pit.” The case also fea­tured marks for accu­ra­cy of ana­lysts’ reports in response to news and for risk man­age­ment per­for­mance. The top teams in this event were Baruch Col­lege (New York) and Bab­son Col­lege (Boston).

Final­ly, the Options trad­ing case required stu­dents to use option val­u­a­tion mod­els to fore­cast the future volatil­i­ty of an under­ly­ing stock, trad­ing options to ben­e­fit from mis­pric­ing across strike prices. In this case, the top place was achieved by the Uni­ver­si­ty of Water­loo with Uni­ver­sité Laval and Baruch Col­lege tied for sec­ond.

Com­pe­ti­tion direc­tor, Mar­co Saler­no, who is also man­ag­er of the lab at the Rot­man School, point­ed out that “stu­dents are chal­lenged to com­pete against each oth­er and they work hard to bring their uni­ver­si­ties as high as pos­si­ble in the rank­ing”. Rot­man Prof. Tom McCur­dy, who is the found­ing Direc­tor of the Lab, reports that the “cas­es were designed to facil­i­tate learn­ing strate­gies that work for a range of sce­nar­ios we could face in an uncer­tain world. The stu­dents’ com­pet­i­tive spir­it and skilled respons­es to our case chal­lenges was a joy to expe­ri­ence.”

BP spon­sored the Com­modi­ties Trad­ing Case, CIBC spon­sored the Algo­rith­mic Trad­ing Case, and Thom­son-Reuters spon­sored the Merg­ers & Acqui­si­tions case. Addi­tion­al finan­cial sup­port for the com­pe­ti­tion was also pro­vid­ed by S&P Cap­i­tal IQ.

The Rot­man School’s Finan­cial Research and Trad­ing Lab is a ful­ly equipped com­put­er lab designed to pro­mote expe­ri­en­tial learn­ing in the area of finan­cial mar­kets and data. The com­pe­ti­tion cas­es are imple­ment­ed over the high­ly acclaimed Rot­man Inter­ac­tive Trad­er appli­ca­tion, a mar­ket sim­u­la­tion tool being used in over 40 uni­ver­si­ties and mon­ey man­age­ment firms around the world. Fur­ther infor­ma­tion on the lab is avail­able at

The Rot­man School of Man­age­ment at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to is redesign­ing busi­ness edu­ca­tion for the 21st cen­tu­ry with a cur­ricu­lum based on Inte­gra­tive Think­ing. Locat­ed in the world’s most diverse city, the Rot­man School fos­ters a new way to think that enables the design of cre­ative busi­ness solu­tions. The School is cur­rent­ly rais­ing $200 mil­lion to ensure Cana­da has the world-class busi­ness school it deserves. For more infor­ma­tion, vis­it


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Rot­man School of Man­age­ment
Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to
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