Beating out nearly 700 students from 34 colleges and universities around the country, Carlson School alum Daniel McAllister won the first-ever All-America Student Analyst Competition. The competition, sponsored by Institutional Investor magazine group and Mark My Media, ran from September 2012 through January 2013.
"Because it was a short-term competition I wanted to focus on companies that were more volatile," McAllister says. "There was no reason to play it safe so we took all companies in the healthcare and financial sectors and applied our algorithm to those."
McAllister earned his bachelor's degree in finance and international business from the Carlson School in 2007. He then worked as a financial analyst at Jack in the Box, and is now a solution consultant at AXmentor, a privately held technology company. The insightful investor is pursuing an MBA from The University of San Diego School of Business Administration.
Student competitors started their simulated portfolios with $100,000 each. The rankings were compiled across seven industry sectors and one general category, utilizing a proprietary six-factor algorithm developed by Mark My Media. The rankings considered net benchmark outperformance, volatility, net exposure impact, gross exposure impact, long alpha and short alpha.
It was a combination of insight and analysis that set him apart. While McAllister performed the technical analysis, his colleague Adam Husein built an algorithm that ranked companies to consider. It was that algorithm that pointed to undue optimism in one drug development company. It was McAllister's choice to short the stock that clinched his win, when the company's stock price plummeted more than 80 percent near the end of the competition.