Governor’s Award for the Best Diploma Thesis - 2020”

Publication date: 21.12.2020


On 21 December 2020, under the auspices of the Governor of the Bank of Albania, Mr Gent Sejko, the ceremony for the “Governor’s Award for the Best Diploma Thesis - 2020", took place virtually.

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The Governor’s award is an open contest that is organised annually by the Bank of Albania and is dedicated to Albanian students - graduated in Albania or abroad - for their research related to monetary and international economics, financial stability, economic integration issues of Balkan countries in the European Union, monetary policy and macro-prudential policies of the Bank of Albania, fiscal policy and their role in economy, the Albanian banking system, and overall economy aspects.

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At the beginning, Governor Sejko highlighted that the organisation of this contest by the Bank of Albania aims at assessing, promoting and rewarding the research of students, to motivate their encouragement and capacity to undertake deeper studies on important issues of economics and finance.  Also, Mr Sejko thanked and congratulated all participants in the contest for the commitment and seriousness showed in their submitted works.

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The first prize was awarded to Ms Megi Jaupi, a student at the ETH Zurich University, Switzerland, by the Governor of the Bank of Albania, Mr Gent Sejko, for the study on "Generative Adversarial Networks for Multivariate Return Simulation and Robust Portfolio Optimization”.

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The thesis is based on and applies the methodology of neutral networks, as one of the most innovative and sophisticated methods for the approximation of multidimensional variables allocation in the case study of economy and finance. The study is organised as an applied experiment, being both interesting and innovative. In compliance with the best academic standards, the author compares the results of her experiment with the results attained from the traditional methods of applied optimisation in finance. The thesis was particular, in terms of the applied approach, and for the complete and rigorous addressing of the topic pursuant to all the requirements of academic writing.

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The second prize was awarded to Mr Argi Hanku, a student at the University of Vienna, Austria, by the First Deputy Governor, Ms Luljeta Minxhozi, on “Evaluating Low Frequency Liquidity Proxies”.

This study focuses and discusses liquidity as an important characteristic of securities investment. This focus brings in this contest a new point of view, which was not addressed so far in the previous applications for the “Governor’s Award for the Best Diploma Thesis”. Investment liquidity is a very important aspect and takes a particular attention in the field of monetary operations in the context of the well-management of foreign currency reserve.  Liquidity of investment portfolio is a crucial element of investing behaviour, particularly during and after financial and economic crisis, but which has not taken very much attention in the studies submitted so far.

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The third prize was awarded to Ms Eda Meta, a student at “Berlin School of Economics and Law” University, Germany, by the Second Deputy Governor, Ms Natasha Ahmetaj, on “Assessment of the impact of CoCo bonds on banks”.

This paper assesses the impact and effectiveness of CoCo bonds (Contingent Convertible Bonds) on the bank solvency, as an instrument for absorbing losses. Notwithstanding in case of Albania, CoCo bonds are not yet e reality, it is worthy to discuss and know these novelties, as an alternative and possibility, even at academic level. The development of capital market my turn them into a close reality, but always they should be analysed and considered carefully.