Top Trader Stock Market Competition


The 2017 High School Trading Competition has completed. Please join us during next year’s competition!

The University of Texas at Dallas is very excited to present the 7th annual Top Trader Competition. Throughout the summer program, high school students will be exposed to the world of investment management. The goal is simple: who can take the skills learned throughout the program and apply them to make the most money in our virtual simulator? Do you have what it takes to be the TOP TRADER?

Registration Closed

After you sign the talent release form, the Top Trader team will contact you with registration information.

Top Trader
  • Program Overview
  • Financial Education
  • Faculty Videos
  • Program Testimonials
  • Program in the Media

Program Overview

WIN big bucks! $1000.00 over the summer just by trading stocks in the UTD Top Trader Stock Market Competition!

With an initial balance of $1 million dollars of virtual currency, participants can invest in stocks, and ETFs. If that still doesn’t excite you, we are offering a variety of prizes to the best of the best, as well as a congratulatory banquet and gifts to high school students who participate. In addition, take advantage of earning Investment and Personal Finance Knowledge certificates along the way.

The Details

    • WIN $1000.00 in the summer!!!
    • WIN Google Home, and more prizes
    • FREE to the first 50 registrations!
    • Registration open from May 1st to June 16th.
    • Contest is conducted 100% online and campus attendance is not required to participate.
    • Competition runs Monday, June 5, 2017, through Friday, July 21, 2017. Note:
    • A computer with a high-speed internet connection is required to access the web-based trading program.
    • Prizes will be awarded to individuals who place in the “Elite 5″ during the Awards Banquet.
    • To participate one must be a legal resident or citizen and have a valid social security number.
    • An awards banquet will be held on Saturday, August 5, 2017 at the university.
    • Like us on Facebook  UTD Top Performer Trading Competition

Financial Education

In addition to the competition itself, the program also contains a more formal teaching aspect. We have divided what members learn into two sections, Certificate of Basic Investment Knowledge I and II and the Certificate of Personal Finance Knowledge I and II. The first area focuses on investment knowledge, while the second focuses on personal finance skills. To earn these certificates, students will need to watch videos related to investments and personal finance topics and attempt related exams/quizzes in Canvas. There are two exams/quizzes to test investment knowledge and two more to test Personal Finance knowledge.

  1. To earn Certificate of Basic Investment and Personal Finance Knowledge I the student needs to take the two Level I exams/quizzes and make at least 80% on each of the two exams. The Level I exams are titled as “Certificate of Basic Investment Knowledge Level I” and “Certificate of Personal Finance Knowledge Level I.”
  2. To earn Certificate of Basic Investment and Personal Finance Knowledge II the student needs to take the two Level II exams/quizzes and make at least 80% on each of the two exams. The Level II exams are titled as “Certificate of Basic Investment Knowledge Level II” and “Certificate of Personal Finance Knowledge Level II.”

We highly encourage you to watch the videos and interact with students online in Canvas, our online educational system.

Below, you will find a preliminary list of the topics covered under each certificate. Members will be given access to the “Canvas” platform where videos can be found for each topic area.

Certificates and Portfolio Value

  1. If the student earns Certificate of Basic Investment and Personal Finance Knowledge I then he/she will be given an extra $100,000 in virtual money that will be added to his/her portfolio at the end of the competition/contest.
  2. If the student earns Certificate of Basic Investment and Personal Finance Knowledge II then he/she will be given an extra $100,000 in virtual money that will be added to his/her portfolio at the end of the competition/contest.

Certificate of Basic Investment Knowledge Level I – Course Topics

  1. Introduction to interest
  2. Interest
  3. Time Value of Money
  4. Discounted Cash Flows
  5. Fundamental Cash Flows
  6. Introduction to Balance Sheets
  7. More on balance sheets and equity
  8. What it means to buy a company’s stock
  9. Price and Market Capitalization
  10. Introduction to the Income Statement
  11. Earnings and EPS
  12. Introduction to the Price-to-Earnings Ratio
  13. P/E Discussion
  14. Bonds vs. Stock
  15. Introduction to Compound Interest
  16. Annual Percentage Rate and Effective Annual Rate
  17. Introduction to Bonds
  18. Relationship between bond prices and interest rates
  19. Open-Ended Mutual Fund
  20. Closed-End Mutual Funds
  21. Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs)
  22. Does short selling work?
  23. Diversification and Correlation

Certificate of Basic Investment Knowledge Level II – Course Highlights

  1. Complete Level I of Basic Investment Knowledge
  2. Shorting a Stock
  3. Put Options
  4. Call Options
  5. Currency Exchange and Trading
  6. Futures Contracts
  7. Hedge Funds
  8. Hedge Fund Strategies
  9. The Yield Curve
  10. Efficient Market Hypothesis
  11. Credit Default Swaps
  12. Mortgage Backed Securities
  13. Beta, CAPM and Standard Deviation
  14. Becoming a Chartered Financial Analyst

Certificate of Personal Finance Knowledge Level I – Course Highlights

  1. Introduction to interest
  2. Introduction to Compound Interest
  3. The Rule of 72 for Compound Interest
  4. Renting vs. Buying a Home
  5. Renting vs. Buying a Home (part 2)
  6. Leasing vs. Buying a Car
  7. 401(k)s
  8. Traditional IRAs
  9. Roth IRAs
  10. Payday Loans
  11. Credit and Debt
  12. Budgeting
  13. Financial Planning for Teens
  14. Introduction to Taxes

Certificate of Personal Finance Knowledge Level II – Course Highlights

  1. Complete Level I of Personal Finance Knowledge
  2. Term vs. Whole Life Insurance
  3. Estate Planning and Taxes
  4. Human Capital
  5. Disability and Long-Term Care Insurance
  6. Personal Bankruptcy: Chapters 7 and 13
  7. Risk Tolerance
  8. Calculating Needs for Financial Goals
  9. Becoming a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ Professional

Faculty Videos

Meet Some Faculty, Staff and Students at the Naveen Jindal School of Management

While the investment competition is arguably the more exciting part of the program, the educational videos and quizzes will give large dividends in terms of financial knowledge in both the short and long term.

Below, you will find many videos from our staff and faculty about what they wished they had learned about investing and personal finance before going to college.

Matt Polze

Associate Dean of Undergraduate Students

Professor Polze teaches business law at UT Dallas and also serves as one of the Associate Deans of Undergraduate Education. Watch and listen to Professor Polze discuss the important of education and the economic impact it provides to students.


Monica Powell, PhD.

Associate Dean of Graduate Education

Dr. Powell serves as the Associate Dean of Graduate Education at the Jindal School of Management. She helps oversee the school’s nationally recognized graduate and MBA programs.  Dr. Powell discusses some money lessons she learned early in life that she still uses today.

Program Testimonials

You have probably already heard a lot of the great things the competition provides, but here are some testimonials from former competitors and the President of the DFW Financial Planning Association.

Cliff Layfield
President, DFW Financial Planning Association

This is the DFW Financial Planning Association’s second year to endorse the competition. Watch and listen to Mr. Layfield, President of the DFW FPA, talk about the benefits of financial planning, the DFW FPA and the Top Performer Competition.

Top Performer Competition in the Media