HIT Motto

Financial Engineering students

Financial Engineering students visit the ZSE

The Harare Institute of Technology Financial Engineering students recently visited the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange for an orientation on the local bourse.

The students were first briefed by an official from the ZSE on its role, mandate, ownership, trading, counters, stock and capital flows as well as index calculations, before observing the actual trading which lasted for about an hour with most counters trading on the local bourse.

The students were also given an opportunity to ask some questions relating to what they observed during trading as well as other issues related to the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, capital and stock trading.

Speaking soon after the visit, Chairman of the Department of Financial Engineering, Mr Gwarimbo, who was leading the group, encouraged the visiting students to start applying what they had learnt and observed in their current studies so as to improve their knowledge of the industry they shall venture into after completion of their studies.

Mr Gwarimbo also encouraged other students and staff from other schools at HIT to conduct such industrial visits to establish partnership and good industrial relations inorder to market the Institue and its programmes and make it easy for students to get internship places.

Most of the visiting students expressed much interest in venturing into stock and capital trading after being impressed by the large volumes of capital and stock traded on the day.

Financial engineering is the design, development and implementation of innovative financial instruments and processes as well as the formulation of creative solutions to challenges in finance. The development and creative application of financial theory and financial instruments is key in structuring solutions to complex financial problems and to exploit financial opportunities; given the dynamic environment that characterizes today's financial services industry the world over.

The Harare Institute of Technology School of Business Management and Sciences offers the B.Tech (Honours) Degree in Financial engineering which involves the application of science-based mathematical models to decisions about saving, investing, and borrowing, lending, and managing risk.

In recent years, there has been a phenomenal rise of many new derivatives markets which has vastly enhanced the scope of financial engineering. As a result it has become possible to produce at reasonable cost customized financial contracts that address a broad range of investment and risk management needs faced by firms, households and governments around the world.

The main strands of the programme are:

The Zimbabwe Stock Exchange(ZSE) is the official stock exchange of Zimbabwe. It has been open to foreign investment since 1993. The exchange has about a dozen members and over 65 listed securities. There are two indices, the Zimbabwe Industrial Index and the Zimbabwe Mining Index.

The first stock exchange in Zimbabwe opened its doors shortly after the arrival of the Pioneer Column in Bulawayo in 1896. However, it only operated for about six years. Other stock exchanges were established in Gwelo (Gweru) and Umtali (Mutare). The Mutare Exchange, also opened in 1896, thrived on the success of local mining, but with the realisation that deposits in the area were not extensive, activity declined and it closed in 1924. After World War II a new exchange was founded in Bulawayo by Alfred Mulock Bentley and dealing started in January 1946.

A second floor was opened in Salisbury (Harare) in December 1951 and trading between the two centres took place by telephone. Traders continued working by telephone until it was decided that legislation should be enacted to govern the rights and obligations of the members of the exchange and the general investing public.

The Rhodesia Stock Exchange Act reached the statute book in January 1974. The members of the exchange continued to trade as before and for legal reasons it became necessary to create a new exchange coincidental with the passing of the legislation. The exchange dates from the passing of the act in 1974, and is operated and regulated in accordance with the act and its amendments, including 1996's Zimbabwe Stock Exchange Act: Chapter 24:18.

On achieving independence from Britain in 1980, the exchange changed its name from the Rhodesia to the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange.

With the decline of the Zimbabwean economy, hyperinflation rendered the Zimbabwean dollar useless and the US-Dollar was adopted as the legal tender for trading on the exchange.