EVANSTON, Ill., March 12, 2018 -- Northside College Prep won the 6th Annual Magnetar Academy Team Challenge at Navy Pier on Saturday, March 10, taking home a school grant for $5,000. This year's competition was the biggest yet with 400 students representing 48 teams from 34 high schools. Deerfield High School placed second taking home a $2,500 grant, and Lincoln Park High School placed third with $1,000. The Financial Literacy Quiz winner was Whitney Young Magnet High School.
The trading challenge gave students a unique opportunity to experience what it's like to trade stocks in a simulated competition. The simulation lasted two hours and covered 120 days of historical market data – broken down into two 60-minute sessions. Teams began the day with $100,000 in their portfolios to invest from a pool of over 100 stocks. Profit and loss updates were given every few minutes. Teams built their portfolios using a trading application on a desktop computer. Roughly 50 financial services professionals from Chicago area firms served as team coaches.
The New York Times personal finance columnist and best-selling author Ron Lieber led the #MagMoney financial literacy quiz and gave the keynote address.
"My message today to the students is that you are entitled to start conversations with the adults in your life about money and it's okay to demand answers from colleges about what they will cost. You will be richer for it," said Mr. Lieber in his keynote address. "The students in the room are 99% more informed than most students. No one is going to educate you about money – and if they do, it won't be for free."
"Financial literacy isn't a nice to have, it's a need to have regardless of what a young person's future holds," said Alec Litowitz, Founder and CEO of Magnetar Capital to the students in his opening remarks. "A lot will hinge on money and all the decisions around it. If you make informed decisions, opportunities will multiply; if you make uniformed decisions, problems will multiply. And it all depends on basic skills that are not difficult to learn."
The Magnetar Academy was established by Magnetar Capital in 2011 and many employees volunteer each year to support the Team Challenge.
About Magnetar Academy: The Magnetar Academy is a free, hands-on program that prepares high school youth to make informed financial decisions. Students learn about budgeting, credit, saving, investing and other important financial topics. Since 2012, more than 14,400 Chicago youth have participated in the 35-hour program. More information is available at https://financialeducation.uchicago.edu/
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