Student Spotlights

Peter Pane

Peter Pane (Class of 2013)

Major:
Finance
Fun Fact:
Peter bought his first stock when he was only 12 years old. With outstanding guidance from his father he was able to successfully purchase his first shares of Microsoft in 1999. This was the spark of the passion that he developed for investing.

What brought you to Niagara University?

A few years after I completed high school I decided to take the proper steps to pursue my profound interest in investments. I started by attending Niagara County Community College. In only 16 months I earned my Associates degree in Accounting with high distinction and as a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society. While I was working towards my associates degree I started to visit various universities to see which one would best compliment my future career goals in wealth management.   While I was looking into Niagara University I met with Edward Hutton, CFA, Assistant Professor of Finance and Myriam Witkowski, Assistant Dean. This was the beginning of just a couple of the great relationships that I developed here at Niagara University. The guidance and support that they have provided me with was greatly superior to what I had expected.  

Are you participating in any Finance related activities here on campus?

Yes. I am currently the Chief Executive Officer of the Finance Association. I have also been appointed as the captain of Niagara University’s equity research team to compete in the spring 2013 CFA Institute Research Challenge.  The CFA Institute Research Challenge is an annual global competition that promotes equity research to the highest standards through hands on mentoring, intensive training in company analysis, CFA code of ethics, and presentation skills. It is a series of competitions broken up into local, regional and world segments. For each competition, a local publically traded company is chosen and each team must prepare an in depth financial overview. This process includes creating an analyst report that includes a business description, investment risks, valuation models, price recommendation and an investment summary. The company that was chosen this year is Computer Task Group. During the competition each team will give a ten minute presentation on their research findings. After they present their analyst report they will answer ten minutes of questions from a high profile panel of experts that currently work in some of the top financial institutions around the world. The winning team will then advance to the regional compaction that will take place in Toronto, Canada.  

 

This year for the CFA challenge I will be leading a team of five students including Brandon Gallegos, Steven Boyle, Ling Zhou, Marco Bubic, and myself. Each team member will be putting in at least 250 hours in addition to our weekly meetings. Professor Hutton, CFA is our Faculty Adviser and Professor Gattuso, CFA, CFP, CMA, is our industry Mentor for the competition. Two weeks ago our team met with the CFO of Computer Task Group. This allowed us to ask more in-depth questions about the company. The competition is a great resume builder and gives you a chance to make a name for yourself.  Many recruiters attend the competition which makes it a great networking event. There will be many professionals that will give presentations during the event. This will provide everyone competing a great opportunity to learn more about all the great career opportunities that will come from obtaining their CFA.

What other activities have you been involved with?

I was able to network with a Citi representative from equity research last year when I attended the CFA Institute Research challenge as a guest. This led to a summer internship with Citi bank in Buffalo, NY last year as a summer analyst, in the North American Controllers Department.  My focus was researching and fixing problems that currently existed with the processing and recording of fixed income and equity trades. By the end of the internship I successfully completed my task and was able to explain and fix over 16 billion dollars in breaks that currently existed. My supervisors where so impressed with the high level of performance that I brought to Citi, they allowed me to make a multimillion dollar adjustment to Citi’s balance sheet during my last week with them. During the internship I received the highest performance review possible. One great thing about the internship was that it gave me a broad view of the company. I was able to join in weekly meeting with senior directors from different areas to learn in depth what other departments at Citi entail. This gave me great insight in determining what areas I am interested in for my future career.

Are there any classes you took at Niagara University that you found especially interesting?

Yes, Security Analysis & Portfolio Management and Derivatives & Risk Management with Professor Hutton were extremely valuable to me. In Security Analysis & Portfolio Management I learned so many great things including different valuation modeling like FCFE (free cash flow to equity), The Efficient Frontier, and a lot about how bonds are valued.  In Derivatives & Risk Management I learned everything from the Black–Scholes options pricing model to repo’s, swops, and futures, this is just naming a few. All of the great things that I learned in these classes directly tied into my current knowledge in investing. This allowed me to rapidly excel and it took my knowledge to the next level. These classes gave me a more in-depth view of topics which I am sure will benefit me in the near future. During my time here at Niagara University I have spent many hours in our trading room. This was my favorite place to work and with Prof. Hutton’s office connected directly to the room it made for an ideal place to learn outside the class and complete assignments.  

What are you plans for the future?

My current goal is to land a job in wealth management. I plan to pursue my Certified Financial Planner (CFP) and Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA).  Prof. Hutton advised, "Peter is one of the highest potential finance students I have ever taught. He truly loves the field, and he excels in all of his classes with me. He was selected to be the Captain of the Niagara CFA Investment Research Challenge team, as well as Co-Chair of the Finance Club. I really don't think there is any limit to what Peter will achieve in his career".