Junior investors prove financially savvy in contest
Jane Seyd / North Shore News
Handsworth students Shay Harrison, Kaden Johnson and Fin
Tugwell put their financial smarts to the test and came second in Canada
in Junior Achievement’s investment strategies challenge. photo Mike
Wakefield, North Shore News
Buy low, sell high.
Paying close attention to that time-tested advice earned three
Handsworth Secondary students top provincial honours in a contest aimed
at challenging the financial moxie of junior investors.
In just six weeks, the three teens – Shay Harrison, 14, Kaden
Johnson, 14 and Fin Tugwell, 15 – managed to turn an initial investment
of $100,000 into $172,000 by riding the wild rollercoaster of
The catch: the money they earned wasn’t real.
But the lessons they learned about investing: the value of
information, when to take risks and when to play it safe, were ones the
students can take to the bank.
The trio were among several teams from business teacher Jordan
Dickson’s classes at Handsworth, who took part in Junior Achievement’s
investment strategies challenge last fall.
The online competition connects students to a virtual investment
portfolio linked in real time to the New York, Toronto and NASDAQ stock
Students research companies through sources like the Wall Street
Journal and Bloomberg News and decide when to buy and when to sell.
During the contest the progress of different teams was tracked through
an online leaderboard.
At the beginning of the contest, the teens said they played it safe,
investing in “blue chip” technology companies like Amazon and Google.
But they soon realized that wasn’t going to give them results in a quick time frame.
That’s how they started watching the Marathon Patent Group (MARA), a
smaller company linked to cryptocurrency like bitcoin that was seeing
skyrocketing highs combined with plunging lows.
“Their stocks were spiking and dropping,” said Harrison. “We bought it when it was dropping and sold it when it went back up.”
Their risky investment strategy paid off – the team placed first in
the province and second in Canada in the investment challenge, which
students at Handsworth have taken part in for several years.
Harrison may come by his investment savvy honestly – both his father and his grandfather have traded in the stock market.
But the teens said nobody told them how to invest – other than
general advice from their teacher about the importance of diversifying,
avoiding transaction fees and researching investments.
While Dickson has a masters degree in financial math, he said his
own involvement in the stock markets has been mostly theoretical. “I’ve
never done a lot of heavy investing myself.”
Despite winning big in the virtual stock market, the teens said they
are in no big rush to race in there with a lot of real money, pointing
to some anxious moments that came even when their fortunes of the fake
“It’s not just putting money in and getting money out. You can also lose money,” said Harrison. “It’s harder than it looks.”
Read the original article at NSNews.com: http://www.nsnews.com/news/north-van-students-test-out-cryptocurrency-stocks-1.23325971.