Keystone Society’s Event - Trading Floor Game
Keystone is an English-speaking society that started by students and aims to provide students who have an interest in finance with first-class tools to build their careers. It focuses on getting students through the recruiting process at top investment banks, accounting and management consulting firms. Keystone Society’s first event, the open outcry trading game, was held on Thursday, December 3rd, 2015.
Applicants who had had to pass an interview and have their reasoning skills tested assembled in a room with two long desks in the middle. They were asked to split into teams of two: one trader who would execute orders in the market, and one investor who would walk around the two trading desks and decide which securities he or she would like to invest in to increase the value of team’s portfolio.
Foxconn shares and futures on gold were the two securities teams could spend their imaginary ten thousand dollars on. News and investors’ decisions would move the market, as the latter had to offer a competitive price to buy or sell assets — lower bid and higher ask. The level of insanity in headlines varied from 0 with the neutral “NASDAQ index loses 5.7% of its value” to 100 with “Coup d’etat in Zimbabwe”.
But the news was not the only thing that made investors shiver with fright or scream with triumph. A lot of yelling from the trading pits was enough to make anyone want to curl up and put on some mufflers. It was clear from the tone of many voices shouting in unison whether the market was being bullish or bearish.
In this mayhem traders had to make sure that trade tickets containing team names, securities, quantities, and prices were filed correctly. So a unified system of gestures real exchanges used to employ until all trading was computerised came in useful during our simulation. Traders were able to demonstrate their desired action only using their hands, prices and quantities could be shown on the fingers of one hand.
Open outcry trading game is part of the application process for Keystone Society, which focuses on giving students comprehensive assistance in building a management consulting or investment banking career.