14 – Week Financial Basics

These are the requirements for your semester project. Please ensure that you understand all components and work on your project throughout the semester. The complete project must be submitted by the end of week 14.


  1. To acquaint students with sources of market and price information available for personal investment that will help to make better financial decisions.
  2. To assist students in understanding the role and operation of the financial markets.
  3. Develop an appreciation of how various forms of investment information can lead to better investing skills and returns.
  4. Apply the concepts and tools presented in the course to identify logical chains of causes and effects determining price changes in the financial markets.
  5. Describe an investment portfolio and how students would go about developing, monitoring, and managing a portfolio of securities.

Project Part 1

Research Your Investments!

Select a minimum of 5 (five) companies from different industries and provide information for points 1 through 9 and why or why not to invest in this company.

Investing involves making informed decisions, which means researching companies and industries before plunking down your hard-earned money! An excellent source of information about a company is the company itself, particularly its annual report to stockholders. In this project, you’ll examine the annual stockholders’ report of a company in which you are interested. (You can substitute an annual report for a current 10K filled to the SEC). The annual report is a document that provides financial and operating information about a company to its owners, the stockholders. Obtain a copy of the latest annual report of the company you are researching. The best research tool is the BB&T finance lab located at the HU Fort Myers campus room 330. Additional websites will be recommended by your instructor for online research. (Stocktrack, MorningStar, Finviz etc). Carefully study the annual report or 10K and then prepare a corporate profile of the firms you selected. Your profile should include the following elements: 1.Name of the company, its ticker symbol, and the exchange on which it trades 2.Current market price of the stock and its percentage change from 1, 3, and 5 years ago (try to find a chart of its stock price) 3.Location of its corporate headquarters, names of its officers, and percentage of inside ownership 4.Brief description of the company, including its major products or services 5.Brief history of the company 6.Major competitors 7.Sales and profit summaries 8.Other relevant financial ratios and measures 9.Recent developments and future plans

Project Part 2

You will want to approach the trading with the objective of making the greatest amount of money since this is the objective of speculators in the market. However, remember that the objective of the project is for you to learn about the role and operation of the financial markets. The focus of the evaluation of your term project will be on your research and analysis of the markets.

  1. Trade in the preferred financial market
  2. Select at least one Mutual Fund
  3. Create table of all trades (buy and sell date, shares, price per share, gain/loss)
  4. Provide detailed analysis for each trade (buy and sell)
    • Must include national and international economic/business events
    • Basic fundamental analysis of investment
    • Reason for transaction

Project Part 3

Summarize your trading results; particularly including the decision making process during the establishment of the portfolio. Your summary should include national and international events, gains and losses, and how specific events have impacted the value of the portfolio.

Finally, include what was learned during this project in terms of speculating in the financial market.

Your final report must include all three (3) project parts. The report must be in APA style, including a title and reference page, and intext citations.


  1. You will have a password and account number. As instructor, I will have access to your trades and will be able to monitor your progress through the game.
  2. You are required to make a minimum of ten round turns. Trade as often as you like; five is just the minimum; the more you trade, the more comfortable you will become. You are to close all trades by week 14.
  3. The instructor will let you know when to start.
  4. You will have an initial capital level of $500,000 for trading. Out of this capital base you must pay commissions, post margin, and cover any losses.
  5. You are not allowed to buy more capital. You may hold up to 25% of your initial endowment in any security.
  6. You are NOT allowed to day trade for more than half of your trades, and if you are not familiar with markets, you may not want to trade with this strategy.
  7. Keep a record of all of your transactions for your personal use as you will be asked to report your trades in your written report