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Adirondack Cup Teams Beats Benchmark Index

Adirondack Cup Teams Beats Benchmark Index

Posted: April 27, 2017

Buffalo State students earned a return of 15.18 percent on a (hypothetical) $1 million investment portfolio, outperforming the benchmark Russell 2000 Index by four percent in this year’s Adirondack Cup competition.

"This is the fourth year students in the Economics and Finance Department have competed in the Adirondack Cup," said Gene Chaas, lecturer and faculty adviser to the team. “We’ve held our own against some outstanding schools." The team’s final standing was eighth of 22 teams, after hitting third place during the 2016–2017 competition sponsored by Adirondack Funds.

The students—Fabiola Belfort, Terry Benites, Dave Lee, and Matt Ohman—researched small-cap companies, defined as companies with market caps between $50 million and $3 billion.

"My favorite part of the competition was applying technical analysis tools," said Belfort. "Learning how to forecast the direction of prices is an invaluable asset obtained from taking part of the Adirondack Cup." She said that the competition was very intense and exciting, requiring extensive reading and research that had to be balanced with the demands of her coursework.

"There is a very concerted push in the investment management industry to bring more women into the profession," said Chaas, a chartered financial analyst (CFA). "Our team is typically very diverse, giving students who may not have considered asset management a career path and access to a field that would welcome them with open arms."

Alicia Lasch, director of investor relations with Adirondack Funds, came to campus in March to meet this year’s team. "The students were really engaged and they asked a lot of great questions," she said. "It’s wonderful to share our passion for investment and give students a little bit of exposure to the financial world. We encourage the teams to be thoughtful in their research and to think in terms of long-term strategy. We’ve been delighted to see the enthusiasm students bring to the competition."

Front row, left to right: Benites, Belfort, Lasch, Ohman, and Lee.
Back row: Chaas, Ted Byrley, associate professor of economics and finance, and Fred Floss, chair and professor of economics and finance.

Credit: Caleb Otto

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