Piquing teens’ interest in investing through competition

WASHINGTON – In an effort to get their teens interested in personal finance, a group of parents in Olney, Md., is taking a different approach — employing good, old fashioned competition.

After Sherwood High School senior Brooke O’Connell approached her mom with investment questions, they came up with a plan to form the Olney Investment Club, made up of 10 parents and 10 teens.

“So the kids had $1,000 and the adults had $1,000 and we both invested it in companies we talked about with our financial advisers,” O’Connell explains.

The groups went through the process of researching and selecting a stock working with financial adviser Drew Brand with Financial Advantage Associates. He was drawn to helping advise the club because of its unique makeup.

“That’s the biggest challenge is getting people interested in this stuff early so that when they’re young they’re doing it and not when they’re 35,” he says.

They’ll sell their stocks in June and see which team won, but more importantly O’Connell says, she now has a better grasp of what investing entails.

“Really it’s something we need to start thinking about now, but we don’t realize it,” she says.

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