Blue Hens Beat the S&P 500 (Again!)

Despite an incredibly volatile time in the financial markets last year, the University of Delaware’s Blue Hen Investment Club (BHIC) was able to beat the S&P 500 Index for the first time in the group’s 20-year history. Then, in 2019, they did it again.

At the close of 2019, the S&P 500 Index had a total return of 31.49 percent. The BHIC returned 35.19 percent for an outperformance of +3.70% in 2019. These results beat out even last year’s to become the largest improvement on the index that the club has ever produced.


“Once again the Lerner College is very proud and impressed by the performance of the student members of the Blue Hen Investment Club,” said Bruce Weber, dean of the Lerner College. “These students accomplished what all Wall Street professionals strive for—outperforming the market—and have now done it two years in a row! We look forward to their continued success in 2020.”


Beating the S&P 500 once was an accomplishment, but beating it twice in a row is truly a unique feat. Built from the largest 500 US-based companies by market value, the S&P 500 is one of the best-recognized American stock market indexes. According to SPIVA scorecard data, 78.52% of funds have underperformed the S&P 500 over the past five years. This demonstrates that even professional investment funds haven’t been able to match the success of these UD students.


The BHIC is a registered student organization open to students from all majors, and the club meets every Thursday night in the Geltzeiler Trading Lab. The club manages over $2 million, giving its students an opportunity to gain invaluable professional experience in responsible trading, fund management and more. Additionally, each semester the club offers a workshop with the purpose of educating both prospective members of the club as well as any students interested in learning more about security valuation. This year, the club also disbursed $27,500 in charitable grants to organizations benefiting the Newark and UD communities through its Charitable Grant Committee.


“By continuing to apply and build upon what is learned in the classroom and always searching for ways to improve, the members of the BHIC enjoyed another successful year of strong performance,” said Jesse Alba, Class of 2020 finance major and president of BHIC. “While we are very proud of this accomplishment, of equal importance are the strides that have been made in advancing the educational mission of the club in the past year. Having the opportunity to see so many of our members grow throughout their time in the club and to see their hard work being recognized has been one of the most rewarding experiences in my time at the University.”

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