The Financial Literacy Stock Market Game recently wrapped up with junior Vinny Marasco as the winner. His overall return on investment was 5.93% – in just five weeks! Vinny’s choices of Tesla and Dick’s Sporting Goods helped secure his victory. Tesla stock went up 15.6% in the time period, while Dick’s Sporting Goods rose 14.7%.
In Financial Literacy classes each semester, students learn about investing through a virtual simulation. Each student is allocated $100,000 to invest in the market as they choose. Each student is required to spend at least $80,000 of their money and they must purchase a minimum of five different stocks or mutual funds. The class’ instructor, Mike Loomis, says, “Investing is a key component in this class and the game helps students get an idea of how and why stock values fluctuate. I warn them that this stock market game is very short term in nature, and can resemble gambling. Investing is more of a long-term activity, especially with the power of compound interest and is best with mutual funds with proven track records.”
Freshman Nathan Opshanski placed second with a 4.83% return on his investment. His gains were highly attributed to Ford Motor Car’s 21% gain in the time period.
Savanna Witherell, a junior, was the third-place finisher earning 3.49%. She had consistent performances out of Microsoft, Google, and Target, each earning about 6.5% over the five weeks.
Sophomore Alyssa Mowris, who finished in fourth, was actually Vinny’s biggest competition in the game. Alyssa was far in front with over a 10% return, only to lose it all and spend time in 19th place. Her investments brought her back up to first, again with over an 8% return, but her volatile stock choices brought her to just 3.16% when the contest was up. Stocks that put Alyssa on this roller coaster ride included Spotify, Exxon Mobil, and John Deere. Loomis noted, “Though Alyssa’s stock choices were not the riskiest out there, it showed how over a short period of time, any individual stock can spike or crash. Each of these stocks have done very well over the course of the year, but in this snapshot of the year, there were lots of ups and downs. If Alyssa had panicked and sold her stocks when they were at lows, she would have guaranteed her losses.”
Each semester, the winner of the stock market simulation gets a cut-out trophy as well as the honor of having a copy of their trophy displayed in the classroom where Financial Literacy is taught. The picture attached shows Vinny with his trophy.
ABOUT FINANCIAL LITERACY:
Financial Literacy is a half-credit class where students learn to manage their money habits, utilize a spending plan, manage checking accounts, and learn about building wealth through investing. They learn about the dangers of debt and identity theft. Additionally, they learn how to save for an emergency fund, how to pay cash for a vehicle, and how to have zero or little debt for college.