Griffith finance team crowned national victors

A Griffith Business School team has taken out the CFA Institute Research Challenge for 2016.
A Griffith Business School team has taken out the CFA Institute Research Challenge for 2016.

A team of finance students representing Griffith Business School claimed the CFA Institute Research Challenge on Friday.

Elias Greil, Rhyan Nash, Lisa Rawlings, Ruby Sethi and Riven Zhang saw off fierce competition from four-time winner and defending champion, University of Sydney, Australian National University and the University of Queensland who were named runners-up.

This is the second occasion a Griffith team has taken out the prestigious national title, after first winning it in 2013. The team will represent Australia in the Asia-Pacific Regional Competition in Bangkok in 2017.

Pro Vice Chancellor (Business), Professor David Grant, described the win as a testament to the calibre of the Griffith team and to the outstanding learning environment provided by colleagues in the finance discipline.

Second-time success

Dr John Fan, now a lecturer at the Department of Accounting, Finance and Economics and the coach of the triumphant 2016 team, was part of the previous winning team.

“The outcome of this year’s competitionmarks our fourth appearance in the finals as well as our second overall success during the last five years of what is a globally recognised and highly competitive university contest,” Dr Fan said.

“I couldn’t be more proud of the team’s achievement. This marvellous achievement should make everyone of us proud, and confirms the upward trajectory that we have all experienced in the finance discipline in recent years in terms of teaching, research and engagement.”

Dr Fan thanked Griffith Business School staff and PhD candidates for their support for the team, and highlighted the input of Dr Alexandr Akimov, Associate Professor Robert Bianchi, Michael Berry, Dr Neda Todorova, Dr Suman Neupane, Professor Eduardo Roca and Dr Osei Wiafe during the preliminary rounds.

Commitment in mentoring

He also paid tribute to industry partners involved in the project, singling out the efforts of Ken Howard from Morgans Financial for his commitment in mentoring the team. Mr Howardplayed a similar role in the 2013 success.

“Their help with preliminary round of selection, the internal competition and critical feedback was enormously important and helped to get our students up to the high standards required.”

The Griffith team is made up of Bachelor of Commerce students, Elias Greil, Rhyan Nash and Lisa Rawlings; Ruby Sethi who is studying a double degree in Financeand Law; and Riven Tingxi Zhang who is a Master of Finance student.

The Griffith team overcame teams from QUT, Bond University, University of Technology Sydney, University of New South Walesand Macquarie University in the first round to advance to the final.

Finalists had to face tough questions from a panel of top investment executives including Mark Lazberger (CEO, Colonial First State), Olivia Engel (MD, State Street Global Advisors) and Richard Brandweiner (CIO, First State Super).