Bissett Insider

Associate Professor Jim Fischer busy mentoring students in the annual Stock Market Competition and with his research projects

The academic year is always an exciting time of year for finance students as the much anticipated Annual Bissett Stock Market Competition is well underway! The 14th edition of the annual competition has thirteen teams of three competing for the right to have their names added to the revered trophy which resides in the Bissett office. Teams have until the end of March to test themselves in both Canadian and US stock markets. With a variety of strategies in play, including buy-and-hold, frequent trading, and the inclusion of options and margin in the mix, it is shaping up to be an exciting time for participants. This is another great example of how Bissett School of Business offers students impactful learning opportunities through experiential opportunities. Thanks for your leadership Jim!
In terms of his research endeavors, Jim Fischer was in Minneapolis during reading week to present his paper “Modern Portfolio Theory and the Efficient Markets Hypothesis: How Well Did They Serve Canada’s Baby-boom Generation? to the Annual Meeting of the Academy of Financial Services. The meeting is held annually in conjunction with the Annual Conference of the Financial Planning Association, attracting a large number of academics as well as industry practitioners.
Abstract: Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT) and the Efficient Markets Hypothesis (EMH) have influenced portfolio management strategies for an entire generation. Taking the example of an average Canadian family from 1977 to 2016, this paper examines how well MPT and EMH served the baby-boom generation of investors. A model investing strategy was constructed based on the principles of MPT and EMH. The strategy was evaluated for its ability to adequately provide for the subject couple in retirement. Results of this portfolio were compared to other popular investment alternatives. Using generally-accepted rules-of-thumb in financial planning, the MPT strategy was found to have provided an adequate retirement income for the subject couple. Some of the other strategies moderately exceeded the returns of the MPT strategy, while others under performed this benchmark. Analysis of these discrepancies reinforced the significance of diversification and of re-balancing portfolios through dynamic asset allocation.

Assistant Professor Tashfeen Hussain active in various research projects

Bissett School of Business congratulates Assistant Professor, Tashfeen Hussain for being selected to contribute a chapter to the upcoming book titled, “Corporate Fraud Exposed”.  The title of the chapter that Tashfeen  will be writing is “The Spillover Impact of Corporate Fraud on Peer Firms”.  The selection process has been quite intensive.  The book will be edited by Dr. Kent Baker, Dr. Lynnette Purda and Dr. Samir Saadi.  The book will be published by Emerald Publishing. Tashfeen expects to have the final draft of the chapter ready by June, 2020.  The book is intended to be used at PhD programs in Finance.

 

As part of the faculty’s  Apaat tsi kani takiiks initiative, Tashfeen and Associate Professor Allan Dwyer have had their proposal approved for developing  a teaching case focusing on indigenous related issues.    The focus of the case will be “Estimating the cost of capital for an indigenous business and evaluating strategies to reduce the cost of capital”.

“The Apaat tsi kani takiiks project is an initiative from Bissett School of Business and the School of Communications  that aims to produce and promote Indigenous-centered curriculum and programming for the next generation of leaders, working to increase access to education for Indigenous students in an attempt to address reconciliation. The three-year initiative began in May 2017 as a continuation of the Suncor Aboriginal Business Education pilot project”. – MRU Media

 

 

2nd Annual MRU RMA Commercial Lending Case Competition was a huge success

The Risk Management Association of Alberta, in conjunction with the MRU Financial Student Organization (FSO) hosted the second edition of the MRU RMA Alberta Commercial Lending Case Competition this past September. The competition is modeled after RMA competitions held in the United States and MRU is currently the only western Canadian University to offer a case competition in this format.

Building upon the success of  last year’s inaugural event, the organizers were happy to  report a 40% increase in student involvement for this year.  This year’s competition seen  10 teams comprised from 38 Bissett BBA student participants  plus six student volunteers to handle the logistics throughout the event. There were also nineteen RMA commercial credit professional-executives and ten faculty and senior management members in attendance. Each of the teams were provided with a dedicated industry mentor to give individualized advice on their analysis.

It was an outstanding few days of learning, mentor-ship and networking! ” – Cathy Roy-Heaton

Each team was evaluated on their written and oral summary, identification of key risks, mitigation of risks, key ratio and financial analysis of the case, as well as their ability to professionally and concisely communicate their findings and defend their recommendations. The teams were extremely competitive as all ten teams placed within 15% of the first place team and there was only 1.2% differential between the 1st and 3rd placed team!

FIRST: $1400 prizeMatt Carson, Kyle McDonald, Riley Lyster, Connor Studer
SECOND: $1000 prize:  Jacob Frank, Deynira Calderon, Ivonne Abarca, Mohsen Esmaili
THIRD: $600 prize:  Alex MacLean, Alex Campbell, Leutirm Bajraktari, Jared Benoit
The RMA raised funds from several financial institutions and provided a prize pool of $3000.00, exceeding the organizers expectations.
Cathy reports that the RMA partners, the judges, the organizing committee and the mentors were impressed with the quality of the analysis, the students’ eagerness to learn and their professionalism.
Bissett congratulates all of the student participants and sends special thanks to our industry partners that made this event possible. A special thanks to Associate Professor, Cathy Roy Heaton for her leadership and mentoring of the students as well as Associate Professor, Carleton Osakwe,   Associate Professor, Tashfeen Hussain and Chair, Reza Chowdhury.
“Many of the students thanked me for the opportunity to be engaged in this experience. No question this is at the heart of what we stand for in the Bissett School of Business. Thank you for making this an impactful learning experience for our students”  – Dean, Elizabeth Evans

Bissett Assistant Professor, Tashfeen Hussain completes oral defense for his PhD

Congratulations to Assistant Professor Tashfeen Hussain who recently completed his oral defense of his thesis! Tashfeen’s thesis has been approved without revision through the Smith School of Business, Queen’s University. The title of the thesis: “Implications of firms’ interactions with debt markets”.

Tashfeen has also been selected to write a chapter on an upcoming book on Corporate fraud. The chapter is titled: “The spillover impact of corporate fraud”.

 

 

Bissett Finance Professor Osama El-Temtamy has paper accepted to conference in Greece

Bissett School of Business would like to congratulate Osama El-Temtamy on having his paper accepted for presentation at the the 7th Spring Conference of the Multinational Finance Society in Chania, Crete, Greece in April 2019. Osama’s paper is entitled: Oil Price Plunge: Are Conventional and Islamic banks equally vulnerable?

Abstract:

“Oil Price Plunge: Are Conventional and Islamic Banks Equally Vulnerable?”
Ghulame Rubbaniy – Zayed University, United Arab Emirates
Osama El-Temtamy – Mount Royal University, Canada
A. W. Khan – University of Evansville, USA
Abida Perveen – Comsats University Islamabad, Pakistan

In response to the recent debate on the vulnerability of the banking industry to oil price plunge, this article investigates the effect of oil price plunge on credit and insolvency risks of banking industry at aggregate level, across banks’ specializations and at country level. Our findings show that falling oil prices significantly increase the credit risk for the banking industry in the GCC region and particularly for banks operating in Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates; however, falling oil prices do not affect credit risk of Islamic banks. Our analysis shows that black gold’s price plunge does not increase the insolvency risk of GCC banking industry nor across bank specializations and across Gulf countries using both accounting-based and market-based proxies of insolvency risk. We argue that bailout packages by the wealth funds to the GCC banks is a probable reason for counter intuitive protection against solvency risk due to negative oil price shocks.

Bissett CFA Ethics Team has won again!

For the second year in a row, the Bissett School of Business team has won the CFA Societies of Canada Ethics Challenge regional round!  The Bissett team beat out teams from  the University of Alberta, University of Calgary, University of Lethbridge and SAIT.

The Bisset team will advance to Nationals which are to be held in Calgary this coming May. Representing the Prairies Region,  they will compete against the top schools from the other Canadian regions: BC, Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes.

The Bissett team is comprised of Aliza Carrol (BBA – Financial Services 2020, Houston Higgins (BBA – Financial Analysis 20190, Gurdit Khatra (BBA – Financial Analysis 2019), Alaina Magnusson (BBA -Financial Analysis 2020) and Allana White (BBA – Finacial Analysis 2020).

As faculty advisor, Bissett Professor Cathy Roy-Heaton would like to mention how proud she is of their efforts and the quality of their analysis of a very complex governance -ethical scenario.

Their success is a direct reflection of the quality of our Finance program! Congratulations Team!

Bissett Professor Tashfeen Hussain has two papers accepted for presentation at Houston conference

Bissett Assistant  Professor, Tahsfeen Hussain, has had two papers accepted for presentation in the South Western Finance Association Conference to be held in Houston in March. The papers to be presented are: “Do Credit Default Swaps Impact Lenders’ Monitoring on Loans?” and “Board Interlock and Fraud Restatement Spillover”. The SWFA Conference is a highly reputed finance conference.

 

2018 -2019 Bissett CFA Scholarship Recipients

As part of the CFA Institute University Affiliation Program membership, the Bissett School of Business is able to award CFA Level Exam Scholarships through the Financial Analysis Concentration.

The finance department has been allocated 15 scholarships for the December 2018 and June 2019 exams. Each scholarship is worth an approximate $900 USD and is administered by the CFA Institute.

The Scholarship selections were made by a committee consisting of Bissett Associate Professors in Finance Allan Dwyer, Carlton Osakwe and Cathy Roy-Heaton. In addition to the requirement of the student recipients being in their final year of studies (BBA GM Major with a Financial Analysis Concentration), the committee also factored in career ambitions and their contribution to the finance program during their time at MRU.

December 2018 Examination: Michael Croft, Shahla (Shay) Hussain, Dylan Nemeth, Fabjan Pepaj.

June 2019 Examinations: Michael Boulter, Quinn Bromley, James (David) Carlson, Maxim Chiguy, Serge Combot, Syed(Jay) Hussain, Ahsan Khan, Riley McCallum, Victor Power-Romero, John (Cam) Price, Austin Vrabel.

Congratulations to all of our student recipients and thank you to the committee for their time and attention given to their thoughtful selections!

MRU FSO and RMA host inaugural RMA Alberta Commercial Lending Case Competition at MRU

On September 27 and 29, the Risk Management Association of Alberta ( “RMA”) and the MRU Financial Students’ Organization (“FSO”) co-hosted the inaugural RMA Alberta Commercial Lending Case Competition on the MRU campus. This competition was modeled after RMA competitions which have been held in the United States.
The event was only open to MRU students.  Thirty two BBA students ( primarily financial analysis and financial services ) signed up and were assigned to 8 teams, each team having an industry mentor (a local commercial lender or banking executive ) who provided each team individualized assistance with their analysis.  the event also included a 75 minute “Commercial Lending 101” seminar, lead by a leading local banker from RBC.
The main portion of the competition had the student teams analyze a provided scenario with both qualitative and quantitative methods to produce a recommendation in an executive summary and commercial lending term sheet.  The mentors provided one hour of limited assistance to their team during the four hours.    Each team then presented their executive summary and term sheet to a panel of judges, over a 10 minute presentation and an 8 minute question and answer period.   The judging panels consisted of local credit risk and banking executives.
The top three teams were:
FIRST: $1400 prize : Team B: Austin Vrabel, Riley McCallum, Connor Nodrick ( 2nd year), Gurdit Khatra
SECOND: $1000 prize: Team E: Sam Lonnberg, Matthew Lonnberg ( 2nd year), Shameel Damji (3rd year), Joseph Neil
THIRD: $600 prize: Team F: Cam Devlin, Ahsan Khan, James Carlson, Enma Calderon ( 2nd year)
The RMA raised funds from several local financial institutions to cover the $3000 prize pool, exceeding expectations!
“Our students were outstanding ambassadors of our program.  Our RMA partners, the judges and the mentors spoke with me throughout the two days of the event and said glowing things about our students: the quality of the analysis, their eagerness to learn and their professionalism were all noted.  In total, 17 corporate-commercial bankers and credit risk professionals came to our campus and worked with our students in some capacity over the two days of the event”  — Catherine Roy-Heaton.
Catherine would like to thank all the industry partners, volunteers and students who made the event the success it was. Special Thanks to Catherine for her continued mentor-ship of the Finance students and the MRU FSO.

Bissett Associate Professor, Catherine Roy Heaton appointed for a 3 year term to the UAC of the AcSB

The Bissett School of Business wishes to congratulate Associate Professor, Cathy Roy Heaton for her recent appointment to the User Advisory Council (UAC) of the Accounting Standards Board of Canada (AcSB).  Cathy has been appointed for a three year term.
The UAC’s purpose is to “assist the AcSB in understanding how users, including investors and investment professionals, credit granters in financial institutions, equity and credit analysts, and rating agencies, use financial information. The Council is also intended to assist the AcSB by providing advice on standard-setting priorities, and on specific agenda projects.”
The combination of Cathy’s academic background and her finance and business career have proven to make her an ideal candidate. As the only academic on the current council, Cathy is excited to bring her academia perspective to this new role.
Congratulations Cathy!