If the audience that attended the UCLA Anderson Master of Financial Engineering commencement ceremony seemed small, it’s in part because the 64 graduates in the Class of 2016 represent 19 different countries —so, many of them are far away from the family, friends and colleagues forming their wider circle of support. To that end, the ceremony is webcast so people overseas can watch in real time.
Tad Rivelle (MBA ’90), TCW’s group managing director and chief investment officer – fixed income, was invited to address the Class of 2016. Finance, he said, is “a market-based coordinated effort” that serves as the “brains of capitalism.” He reminded the newly-minted quants that “markets are a reflection of ourselves, both rational and irrational,” and finance is “not a game you play with other people’s money.” Rivelle is among the most accomplished investment managers to graduate from UCLA Anderson.
Professor Keith Chen is a behavioral economist whose research blurs the traditional disciplinary boundaries in both subject and methodology, bringing unorthodox tools to bear on problems at the intersection of economics, psychology and biology. He recently returned to UCLA Anderson after a stint as head of economic research at Uber, the near-ubiquitous ride sharing platform.
Chen spoke last month at Anderson’s second annual Big Data Conference. His talk focused on Uber’s current challenge, what the professor called “running a ‘gig’ platform.” Much of Chen’s talk looked at Uber’s experimentation with the disruptive impact of driverless cars. He said that Uber was looking to “create order out of chaos.”
Whenever I, an African-American male, hear about any “diversity” event, two predictions run through my mind: either it’s an event where universities push current diverse students involved in their program to attract other diverse prospects, but then fail to show how diversity matters to the greater student body; or it’s a diversity event that emphasizes diversity of thought and doesn’t include many multicultural students.
As someone who has gone through the MBA application process and attended several diversity events at business schools, I understand how hard it can be for an MBA program to find the proper balance required for a successful diversity event: promoting an expansive ideal of diversity encompassing women, LBGTQ and multicultural candidates while still addressing each community’s unique set of challenges and opportunities.
In California, Proposition 209 prohibits state institutions from considering race, sex or ethnicity in public employment, contracting and education. Anderson faces the challenge of ignoring those attributes but still striving for diversity. While the school can’t consider those essential factors in its admissions criteria, I believe Anderson provides great support for diverse applicants because the UCLA Anderson administration — which includes Alex Lawrence (’99), Kimberly Freeman ’02), Gary Fraser and Vickie Euyoque, among many others — is itself diverse. UCLA Anderson also provides budgets to the school’s student clubs and associations, such as Out at Anderson, Black Business Students Association, Latino Management Student Association Anderson Veterans Association, and the Women’s Business Connection. The greater Anderson community has been responsive to recent tumultuous events, supporting a Black Lives Matter fireside, for example. Anderson continues to provide financial support through fellowships with The Consortium for Graduate Study in Management, an organization committed to increasing the representation of African-Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans in U.S. business schools and corporate management. While Anderson still needs to improve percentages among the overall student body, Anderson’s “share success” mindset has always made me comfortable to be my true, authentic self.
UCLA Anderson MBA students compete in case competitions locally, nationally and internationally, often bringing home first prize and always returning with valuable experience facing real-world business challenges in a competitive environment. Today, the UCLA Anderson blog presents the third in a series of guest posts by case competition participants. In November, an Anderson team — one of only eight selected — traveled to the annual Berkeley Haas Tech Challenge, where competitors gain hands-on experience in the technology industry and exclusive access to the protagonist company, which leverages the creativity of top MBAs to solve a real problem facing their business.
Left to right: Steven Tang, Zachary Fields, Anwesha Deb, Josef Bogosian
By Josef Bogosian (FEMBA ’18)
As high-speed 5G wireless is deployed and fixed broadband internet providers build out their networks, new applications will undoubtedly emerge. In mid-November, a team of UCLA Anderson students traveled to UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business to contribute our vision in response to the question, “How will high-speed internet change American lives in the next decade?”
The annual Berkeley Haas Tech Challenge brings together student teams from across the country to discuss and address the challenges of leading tech firms. This year’s sponsor, Google Fiber, challenged teams to come up with creative forecasts for how high-speed internet and related technology will change the way we live.
The UCLA Anderson team — Anwesha Deb (’18), Zachary Fields (’18), Steven Tang (’18) and I — was one of only eight teams selected from 22 schools that applied to compete this year. The Anderson Tech Business Association (AnderTech) coordinated selection of the team to represent UCLA. Other participants included Chicago Booth, Michigan Ross and Northwestern Kellogg.
Left to right: David Shulman, Gerald F. Kominski, Kal Raustiala, Jeffrey B. Lewis, Sebastian Edwards
By Paul Feinberg
The December 2016 UCLA Anderson Forecast conference focused on the ramifications of a Donald Trump presidency on the nation’s economy, as well as on those of California and Los Angeles. The event began with the presentation of three forecasts, with key takeaways for the specific regions.
A roundtable panel of UCLA experts continued the discussion, which was moderated by UCLA Anderson Forecast Senior Economist Jerry Nickelsburg and included Professor Sebastian Edwards, UCLA Anderson’s Henry Ford II Chair in International Management; Professor Gerald F. Kominski of the Department of Health Policy and Management at UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, who is also director of the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research; UCLA Anderson Forecast Senior Economist David Shulman; Professor Jeffrey B. Lewis, who is the UCLA department chair of political science; and Professor Kal Raustiala of the UCLA School of Law, who is also director of the UCLA Ronald W. Burkle Center for International Relations.
Touching on the President-elect’s recent phone call with the leader of Taiwan, Raustiala noted that Trump had often been critical of China during the presidential campaign, and called the phone conversation an “important deviation from U.S. policy and practice.”
“Trump’s inexperience with foreign policy is a concern,” the professor said. “In the field of international affairs, words and rhetoric actually matter.”
UCLA Anderson MBA students compete in case competitions locally, nationally and internationally, often bringing home first prize and always returning with valuable experience facing real-world business challenges in a competitive environment. Today, the UCLA Anderson blog presents the second in a series of guest posts by case competition participants, this one from the Anderson team that placed in Owen Graduate School of Management's annual National MBA Human Capital Case Competition at Vanderbilt University.
Left to right: Alexis Basaldu, Katie Donovan, Jason Finkelstein, Nathan Gardner, Nitya Ramaswami
By Nathan Gardner (’17)
It was 8:00 a.m. the day of the 10th annual National MBA Human Capital Case Competition. Our team arrived at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, feeling excited to present the business case we’d been preparing for a week. Confident in our preparation, we were shown to our staging room. But we received some unexpected news: “Your client has some new information to share with you.”
We were shuttled into another conference room, where a partner in case competition sponsor Deloitte Consulting’s human capital practice was waiting for us. But she wasn’t a partner, exactly; she was in character as the case client’s “chief of staff.” “Our employees are organizing around employee stock ownership,” she told us, “and we’d like you to incorporate this development into your presentation.”
Alexis Basaldu (’18), Katie Donovan (’18), Jason Finkelstein (’17), Nitya Ramaswami (’18) and I spent seven days preparing the tight presentation we had come there to give, and we now had 45 minutes to react, alter our recommendations, and present to the judges. So we got to work.
Given the unanticipated outcome of the U.S. presidential election, the UCLA Anderson Forecast is changing the special topic of the December 6 Forecast Conference from affordable housing to focus instead on how the Trump presidency will affect our economy nationally, state-wide and locally. The event will take place at the UCLA Meyer & Renee Luskin Conference Center.
The National Forecast
Writing on behalf of the UCLA Anderson Forecast, Senior Economist David Shulman makes the following policy assumptions, in what he labels a “first pass at Trumponomics.”
$300 billion/year annual, mostly higher-end personal tax cuts, effective in Q3.
$200 billion/year corporate tax cut effective in Q3, with $50 billion of revenues associated with the repatriation of foreign earnings that quarter.
$20 billion/year infrastructure program, effective in Q4.
$20 billion in higher defense spending in 2018.
$20 billion/year Medicaid/ACA cuts, effective in Q4.
Relaxed energy, environmental and financial regulation.
Modest changes to immigration, except for border wall/fence.
Modest changes to trade policy, yielding net reductions in food and aircraft exports phasing in starting mid-2017.
Shulman says that the net result of these policies is “a massive fiscal stimulus on an economy at or very close to full employment.” He also notes that it is the direction that a host of liberal economists have been advocating for half a decade, though with a different mix of tax cuts and spending. “Make no mistake, this is real or even reckless fiscal stimulus,” writes Shulman. “How so? The federal deficit will roughly double to over one trillion dollars by 2018.” Shulman says that in response to higher inflation and the exploding federal deficit the long-quiescent Fed will become more aggressive, raising the federal funds rate to over 2% by the end of 2017 and 3% by the end of 2018.