DFE's competitions allow Duke students to the learn about the range of roles in the financial markets through hands-on, team-driven experiences. We partner with financial firms and/or alumni, creating opportunities for students to receive feedback on their work from finance professionals. All Duke sophomores, regardless of major, are eligible to participate. 

Duke undergraduates are invited to join the DFE email list to receive information about DFE competitions and activities, including notifications about competition guidelines and registration.

The DFE Trading Game helps sophomores learn about portfolio management and risk and return. Throughout the fall semester, players manage simulated portfolios of global securities via Stockfuse. They gain intimate knowledge of the movements of major financial markets and experience the thrills and spills of developing trading strategies.

Students who are considering applying for summer finance internships will find the Trading Game helpful as a way to get in the practice of watching the markets. All Duke sophomores are eligible to participate.

Fall 2022 Winners

Top Player Overall: John Peters with 5.03% return from Sept. 14 to Dec. 2
Period 1 Top Player: June Lee with 15.89% return from Sept. 14 to Oct. 7
Period 2 Top Player: Chris Johnson with 12.1% return from Oct. 12 to Nov. 4
Period 3 Top Player: Michael Shoichet with 19.35% return from Nov. 7 to Dec. 2

In this BlackRock-sponsored competition, students in teams of three step into the role of portfolio managers for an asset management firm that offers a range of investment funds for many different types of individuals and institutions. As portfolio managers for one particular "class" of funds, each team is responsible for determining the allocation of different assets within its portfolio: that is, what percentage of the overall value of the fund is invested in each asset. The goal is to meet or exceed a target rate of return goal, ideally with as low volatility (standard deviation of returns) as possible.

Teams participating in the competition will be provided extensive guidelines, as well as access to the BlackRock Aladdin Factor Workbench platform, to facilitate the asset allocation process. Teams will be expected to create a presentation that summarizes their asset allocation decisions. The teams with the top presentations will be invited to present to a panel of BlackRock representatives. All Duke sophomores are invited to participate.

Fall 2022 Winners

Best Overall:
Samantha Miller, Ava Ondik, Pablo Torres

Runners Up:
William Kirschner, Tim O’Brien, Lauren Steele
Sam Fuller, Claire Rubenstein, Avi Singh

In the fall semester, DFE invites sophomores of all majors to participate in a corporate valuation competition. In teams of three, students will use various methodologies to value a hypothetical corporation that is evaluating offers for both strategic and financial purchase. Extensive guidelines will be provided.

Participating in this competition enhances students' understanding of how investment banks value corporations as part of deal activity such as mergers, acquisitions, and LBOs. It is valuable for students interested in all roles in the financial markets. The top teams present to a panel of alumni finance professionals.

Fall 2022 Winning Teams:

First Place: Sam Fuller, Claire Rubenstein, Avi Singh

Second Place: Dhruv Bindra, Sid Makharia, Adya Rajpal

Third Place (tie):
JR Johnston, Matthew Quintiere, Ryan Yu
Will Briley, Braeden Shepheard, Ryan Zhu

The objective of this Goldman Sachs-sponsored competition is for students to learn how to create and justify a trade idea on behalf of a hedge fund. Students work in self-selected teams of three to propose a unique trade (buying and/or short-selling specific securities) and create a presentation with an explanation of the trade thesis. The top teams are invited to present their trade idea to a panel of Goldman Sachs investment professionals. Duke sophomores from all majors are invited to participate.

Fall 2022 Winners

Best Overall:
Sam Fuller, Claire Rubenstein, Avi Singh

Most Thought-Provoking:
Grant Bello, Caelyn DeSouza, Adam Goldman

Best Merger/Arbitration:
Ethan Brous, Lucas Sirovich, Jonathan Ziman

Best-Structured Trade:
Ansh Amin, George McLean, Rhone Resch