CUNY students launch educational finance platform, AION Trading

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Ayse Kelce | The Ticker

Ayse Kelce

Baruch College students Anthony Li and Devin Zhou came together with Queens College junior Rocky Zhang to launch AION Trading, an educational platform and interactive community on options trading, in October 2019.

Li explained that the trio met because they were all selling sneakers in high school. “We decided to make a project together, and it became the brainchild of all of us,” Li said about AION. 

AION focuses on the education side of option trading. The company offers a membership with a monthly fee that includes services such as calls, online lessons and guides. The co-founders describe AION as an active community where people from diverse backgrounds can share their knowledge and predictions about the markets and grow their capitals. 

Before the New York Stock Exchange’s trading hours begin at 9:30 a.m., AION members start a phone call around 9 a.m.  “We talk about what we are looking forward to today, and what we are looking forward to this week,” Zhang said. The group also closely follows relevant political and economic news that might closely affect the stock market.

Zhou expressed his appreciation for clubs on campus that help students advance in their areas of interest. He said that he learned a lot of fundamental skills through a mentorship program organized by the Finance and Economics Society at Baruch College last year. 

“I used that skill set and applied to what we are doing here,” Zhou said. According to his co-founders, Zhou spends most of his time writing guides and preparing presentations to benefit the AION members. “In terms of management, Devin is the backbone. He does so much in terms of understanding to connect with our members,” Zhang said about Zhou. 

Zhang prepares online lessons focusing on different perspectives of financial and economics analysis. “Especially in this field, that one piece of information that really clicks with you can turn into a ton of profit when used efficiently,” Zhang said. 

“We have livestreams about how to do technical analysis, we have calls where we discuss certain stocks and what we expect from them that week,” explained Zhou. 

One of AION’s most popular services is its Sunday calls. In these calls, the members get the chance to go over what happened in the market over the week and the state of the economy. 

“We tend to get a lot of beginners bi-weekly, and they always ask a lot of questions that require us to elaborate on the foundation of what we are discussing,” Zhang stated. AION’s goal is to recognize what these newcomers already know, and build on that while providing new information on the topics they are not confident in, according to Zhang.

As finance and economics students, the co-founders of AION agreed that prerequisites for some business and finance classes discourage students who want to learn more about trading earlier and start doing it themselves. Li explained that he sees AION as a work study where they can apply what they had learned in class and actually connect the information with real life experience. 

“You can take a finance class, find out what an option actually is in definition. But when it comes to actively trading, there is a disconnect,” Li said. “The school is good, but sometimes, it is not enough.”