The Stock Market Game, run by Best Prep, started at the beginning of this school year. Over 900 teams compete against each other to make the other competitors fail. With 30 teams in Personal Finance I and II combined, the Owatonna High School has three teams in the Top 10 in Minnesota playing. Starting at $100,000, teams are allowed to purchase and sell or short sale, where they buy stocks against a company in hopes that it goes down. Once it does, the bank has to pay the team. “Basically, you’re betting against the company,” said sophomore Charles Weeks. Weeks and Elliot Rysavy, also a sophomore, are number three in the state and in the classroom. The first team has a gain of 26% with $126,000, the second has $122,000 and the third has $110,000. On December 12, the judges will take a look at the fund balances. The top three teams that have the highest balances will be able to take a trip to a stock brokerage house in Minneapolis, to learn more about investing in the stock market. The objective of the game is to make strong financial decisions and to use the money to your advantage. It is also used to benefit from different trends and to raise the money in your portfolio. “It’s cool to be able to be active in the stock market. It’s good that we’re getting used to how to make money in the future, and to read what the companies do,” said Weeks.
“It’s more than just buying and selling stocks, you need to look at the businesses and the things that will bring the stocks up and down. You need to keep an eye on it,” said Rysavy. The stocks that the two are investing in are Apple, Wells Fargo and most recently, Lakeland, who make hazmat suits for doctors helping Ebola patients in Africa. Rysavy and Weeks made the most money off of Lakeland.
The game may be over soon, but students in Personal Finance have the chance to join during the winter season. “It’s fun, but if you’re doing it in real life, it’s risky,” said Weeks. The next game starts in December, for the next semester class.