W&L Students Tie for First Place at University of Georgia Stock Pitch Competition Scott Holcomb ’23 and Josh Fingerhut ’24 claimed a $2,500 prize for their pitch on Diamondback Energy.
Washington and Lee University students Scott Holcomb ’23 and Josh Fingerhut ’24 tied for first place at the Ninth Annual Stock Pitch Competition held at the University of Georgia on February 17.
The event, which is organized by the Terry College of Business’ Student Managed Investment Fund (SMIF), brings together investment professionals to judge student teams who make researched pitches for U.S.-listed equities with a market capitalization of $1 billion or more.
Both executive members of W&L’s Williams Investment Society (WIS), Holcomb and Fingerhut submitted an application to the Terry College of Business in January to pitch the Texas-based oil firm Diamondback Energy, a stock that was already part of the WIS portfolio.
“Personally, I felt that pitching an energy stock would help set us apart due to the specific technical knowledge needed to understand the sector,” said Fingerhut, an economics major from Havertown, Pennsylvania. “We felt that a positive macroeconomic backdrop for oil and gas, along with the undervaluation of energy stocks made the sector attractive. Diamondback in particular set itself apart due to two recent acquisitions they made and superior operating performance.”
The W&L duo was among 15 teams from colleges across the country that were selected to travel to Athens, Georgia for the final competition. Holcomb and Fingerhut began the event with a morning pitch and were among three finalists selected for another pitch in the afternoon. The competition ended in a tie, with the W&L team and a squad from Florida State University splitting the first- and second-place prizes for a total of $2,500 per team. Holcomb and Fingerhut receive the money and they plan to invest it in their own portfolios.
“I think winning this competition among a crowded field of top universities speaks to the education provided by the Williams School at W&L,” noted Fingerhut. “As members of the Williams Investment Society, Scott and I have been able to get a ton of experience putting together and presenting stock pitches that have real financial implications.”
“The competition was a great experience, and we would like to thank UGA for hosting such a great event,” said Holcomb, an accounting major from Houston, Texas. “Winning is a great honor and we are proud to represent the university well in front of so many other prestigious schools. While the event was a competition at its core, it also served as a great learning experience, and we hope that our hard work has opened doors to future competitions for W&L students.”
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