Student Paper Chosen for Professional Conference

Approximately 18 months and 120 hours of hard work and passion about the stock market has paid off.

Financial Markets Finance major and UMD Honors student Jordan Thorpe's capstone project “The Influence of Intuition on the Decision-Making of Investment Analysts” was accepted by the Administrative Sciences Association of Canada (ASAC) for presentation at its June international conference.

Having her project selected at an international professional conference is a significant feat. “Almost never do you see an undergrad present,” said Geoff Bell, associate professor of management.

“Most presentations will be done by faculty or doctoral students. It is my hope that this will expose Jordan's intellect and abilities to many scholars who, hopefully, will encourage her to pursue a PhD,” added Bell, who was also Thorpe’s faculty advisor for the project and her co-author.

“I helped her understand the totality of a research project, particularly when she was itching to get to ‘the fun part,’” he said.

Thorpe started this project as a junior last in the spring of 2019, not only as an honors capstone project but also as part of the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP).

The paper takes a look at “whether the type of trader (fundamental, technical, balanced) as well as the traders' experience, influences their use of intuition in trading decisions,” said Thorpe.

“This study interests me because I am in the Financial Markets Program, and I am interested in the stock market as well as how professional traders succeed. I wanted to learn more about how traders make decisions, which led me to ask, ‘To what extent do traders rely on intuition or rational decision-making and why?’"

Thorpe, who graduated this spring, knows the value that her capstone project as well as having been in the Financial Markets Program has provided her for her career of being a Buy-Side Equity Analyst while completing her Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) certification.

“This project has helped me engage my mind in multiple different ways,” said Thorpe. “Throughout this project I had to be able to see things from a variety of angles, re-work my thinking on a lot of things, and be able to admit when an original assumption was wrong. While at times frustrating, this experience helped me work through these issues and train my brain in a way that will be very beneficial throughout my career.”

“Jordan has a rare ability to grasp issues VERY quickly,” said Bell. “She is one of the brightest people I've worked with.” 

“I am excited that my work has not only helped me look at things differently but also piqued the interest of others. I hope that people at ASAC will enjoy my research as much as I have and that this will be a great way to help me jumpstart my career in the investments industry.”

However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, presenting at ASAC will be an online event experience rather than in St. Johns, Newfoundland, Canada. Thorpe’s research paper will also be submitted to a professional journal for publication.