At the end of last week's Junior Achievement Stock Market Competition, Wilbraham & Monson Academy's stock was very high.
Competing against teams from throughout the region, Wilbraham & Monson Academy won the school division Nov. 9 at the MassMutual Center in Springfield, Massachusetts.
The team of Oron Steingrub '18, Seth Abal-Sadeq '18, Nick Gourley '18, Napat Pommeechai '18, Peter LaBracio '18 and John Kennedy '19 earned a 75.6 percent return on investment during a simulated 60-day exercise in day trading.
"It's such a fast pace and the adrenaline is going that on the ride home from Springfield they were wiped out," said CEGS Department member Jim Irzyk, who served as the team's faculty advisor. "They were like zombies. It was amazing.
"This was the first real-time, very stressful event we've gone to. It was really fun."
Screens showed the group of nearly 1,000 students stock prices and trends, and also offered news updates.
"We were going nuts," Oron said. "In the last 10 minutes we went from 22nd place to second and then back down to fourth. But they turn off the leaderboard in the last five minutes. At that point it was chaos. But we picked some stocks that did very well. There was some strategy involved."
And WMA's strategy worked, with the team sticking to its roles and staying the course.
"We came in with a contrarian approach to investing," Oron explained. "If a stock dropped because of a scandal, we put a lot of money into it and it worked in our favor."
"I thought they got out of it how important it is to work as a team," Mr. Irzyk added. "We met beforehand and decided who was going to be the computation people, who was going to be a runner and who was going to be an analyst. They had to have specific roles, adhere to them and have the discipline to only do their roles. I thought they did that well."