Sophomore Graham Newton has won the Chatham High School Financial Literacy Stock Market Challenge game for the first semester. Graham achieved a rate of return of 6.1% on his investment. CHS business teacher Michael Loomis coordinates the game with his students in every Financial Literacy class. Students each have an imagined $100,000 to invest in stocks or mutual funds for companies that either they believe in, or choose randomly.
In the six-week contest, Graham increased his $100,000 to $106,100 by investing in well-known, established companies such as Netflix (14% return in time period) and Nike (8%).
In second place was junior Haley Sherman who finished with a return rate of 3.8% Her investments were well diversified. She had increases from mostly well-known companies such as Walmart, Netflix, and Facebook along with specialty companies like Planet Fitness, Ulta Beauty, and Spotify. Third place was won by junior Jacob Park with a 2.9% return on his investment. His earnings were also from a wide array of investments that included Amazon, Dollar General, Nike, Walmart, and American Eagle Outfitters.
Mr. Loomis said, “I was a little worried that this might be the first year that the winner of our game would have a loss on their investment. December of 2018 saw the largest drop in the S&P 500 in 10 years – down 9%. The Dow Jones dropped 8.7%, which was the worst December since 1931 in the Great Depression. The class did not panic, however, and sell all of their stocks at all-time lows. Most students had impressive rebounds in January as seen by the nice rates of return by Graham, Haley, and Jacob.”
Previous winners of Mr. Loomis’s stock market challenge game are:
Spring 2018: Sophia Martino 8.2%
Fall 2016: Jake Osborne 15.5%
Spring 2016: Hunter Wallace 3.94%
Fall 2015: Megan Magner 0.48%
Spring 2015: Janell Rich 1.0%
Fall 2014: Collin Acosta 4.1%
Spring 2014: Cheyanne Corbett 4.6%
Fall 2013: Sanket Sharma 20.2%
Spring 2013: Cee Jay Elmendorf 5.53%
Fall 2012: Gunnar Wordon 4.32%
Financial Literacy is a 1/2 year elective where students learn about budgets, debt, credit, checking accounts, identity theft, and investing. It is recommended that all students consider taking this class before they graduate. Michael Loomis is the high school’s business teacher and work-based learning coordinator, and is a certified public accountant with experience in accounting and management prior to coming to Chatham.