About Project Punch Card

Our goal at Project Punch Card is to foster long-term investment orientation amongst students underrepresented in the investment research and management business.

Join us at the Project Punch Card launch event the Punch Card Conference in NYC.

Warren Buffett to students on the choice of a career:

When you go out in the world, look for the job you would take if you didn’t need the money. You really want to think about, what will make you feel good, when you get older, about your life, and you at least generally want to keep going in that direction. Don’t work for money . . . You’ll never be happy. You have to find the intersection of doing something you’re passionate about and at the same time something that is in the service of other people. I would argue that, if you don’t find that intersection, you’re not going to be very happy in life.

Why a punch card? Once again, the Oracle of Omaha said it best:

I could improve your ultimate financial welfare by giving you a ticket with only twenty slots in it so that you had twenty punches–representing all the investments that you got to make in a lifetime.  And once you’d punched through the card, you couldn’t make any more investments at all.  Under those rules, you’d really think carefully about what you did and you’d be forced to load up on what you’d really thought about.  So you would do so much better.

Punch Card Investment Research Competition          

We will set up an investment research competition amongst students underrepresented in the investment management and research business (black colleges, women-only colleges, community colleges etc.). In this investment research competition, student teams will write an investment idea for the long-term. Please see attached a few sample write-ups. The winning teams from the research competition will be announced in a few media outlets.

Sample Colleges  

Project Punch Card intends to reach out to schools including and similar to Smith College, Wellesley College, Bryn Mawr College, Spelman College, Howard University, Hampton University, Tuskegee University, Morehouse College, etc. Fordham University agreed to participate in the Punch Card Investment Research Competition through a team of Fordham HEOP which is the Higher Education Opportunity Program for underprivileged students.

Punch Card Fund

The winning teams from the Punch Card Research Competition will have a chance to recommend a long-term investment, which will be held for ~5 years. The investments should be researched in a way that will identify businesses with superior long-term prospects. The design of holdings to be held for five years forces the analysts to think more deeply and behave more patiently than the standard stock-picking contests allow or encourage. This process will repeat itself for 5 years so at the end of 5 years the students would have invested in 10 -15 securities. After the five-year period, the investments made in the first year will be sold and used by the winning teams in the sixth year to make investments for the next five years. This part resembles a relay race. If the investments outperform the S&P 500 Index, the excess would be pulled away and put into scholarship funds for the benefit of students from backgrounds underrepresented in the investment management business who express an interest in and aptitude for investment management.

Feedback

We expect prior student participants to interact with new student participants. These interactions will enrich student learning. Current-year participants will present their ideas receiving positive and, even more importantly, negative feedback from prior-year participants.  The current students will hear from the prior participants regarding parts from their investment thesis which worked per the original thesis and the parts which did not. We hope that students will learn to be long-term investors with the full benefit of hindsight as to what has worked and what has not worked

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