Non-profit organization Junior Achievement of New York, which places volunteers in NYC and Long Island class rooms to “teach students about their role in society and how to successfully navigate their futures,” held its annual Stock Market Challenge last night. The fundraiser, sponsored this year by Merrill Lynch, simulates 60 days of trading, with teams (from banks and other businesses) being issued $500,000 in mock dollars that they use to purchase fake stocks before the “opening bell.” They then buy and sell through a “floor trader,” several of which roam the room taking orders. All proceeds go to funding JANY’s programs. Unfortunately, we weren’t invited. Luckily, one participant took copious notes. Normally we’d make you wait for the results (as you would expect, ranking from first to last place is determined by how much "money" each team has at the end), but they’re too hilarious—and telling—not to put out there up front. (You’ll note that Citi did not place in the Top Ten, which had less to with lacking skills and more to with neither participating nor donating to the event, because it was awake at the office doing work.)
1. Best Buy (1)
5. Keyspan (1)
6. Goldman (2)
8. Best Buy (2)
9. Keyspan (2)
10. (I forget, but not a big-dog)
11. Pitney Bowes
19. Goldman (2)
Some additional points of interest:
- Last night’s win by Best Buy’s A-Team (B-Team came in 8th, still beating Goldman by a long shot) represented its third straight 1st place finish in as many years.
- Both Best Buy teams were wearing their trademark blue shirts; the Goldmans wore suits, in addition to their cloaks of failure.
- Man from MetLife yelling at the bartender, “Just give me a fucking Amstel if you don’t have fucking Budweiser! I got 30 seconds before opening bell!”
- Deloitte employees stealing intel from a team that didn’t show up. (Each team was given a package that included “paperwork,” two "Press Release" tags (providing news on the mock stocks through the weeks) and five "Portfolio Summary" tags.))
- One of the volunteer traders telling a Merrill guy to "fuck off" for getting spit in his ear while shouting trades.
- The fact that Merrill’s third place finish represented a tremendous improvement from last year, when it came in 21st place (out of 24 teams).
- Everyone putting down their heads and walking out of the room in (near) tears, while the Best Buy Geek Squad guys showered each other with praises, while high-fiving and chest bumping.