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Published: Tuesday, 2/28/2006

Team of Rossford 8th graders moves into first

BY JON CHAVEZ
BLADE BUSINESS WRITER

After six weeks, a new leader has emerged in The Blade's 16-week School Stock Contest: the Jobbers, a team of eighth graders at Rossford Junior High who have a passion for stocks and a slow but steady portfolio.

The 12 students, who have become strong watchers of the market as a whole ascended to the top this week on a mere 0.54 percent gain last week. Its hypothetical portfolio, which began with $40,000, jumped to $43,755 as of Friday.

The previous leader, the TheLegGp team from Bowling Green High School, suffered a drop. Last week's third place team, SJJ1, a seventh grade team from the academy attached to St. John's Jesuit High School, held its position.

"I think the lesson here is pretty simple: The team that avoids any major mistakes, they're the ones that continually advance," said Matthew Faltys, vice president and director of portfolio management for Fifth Third Bank (Northwestern Ohio), a contest co-sponsor and tabulator of results.

"The Jobbers don't have any bad performers, but [the Bowling Green team] had a stock that dropped 6 percent over the week. Sometimes that's all it takes, and it was Seagate Technology for them."

The Blade's Newspaper in Education program is co-sponsoring the contest, which involves more than 600 students, 36 teams, and 21 northwest Ohio schools. The contest ends May 5.

Teams are competing for prizes of $250 for the first-place team and $250 for the school, $150 for the second-place school, and $100 for the third-place teams school.

Teacher Bo Evarts, of Rossford Junior High, said his Jobbers team, one of three pre-algebra classes at the school, were both thorough in selecting and creative in promoting the four stocks that became their portfolio. The stocks are The Andersons Inc.; Best Buy Co.; Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd., an Israeli firm specializing in generic drugs; and Aqua America, a Pennsylvania holding company that provides water and wastewater services throughout the country.

Since the contest began, Mr. Evarts said, his team has begun researching other teams' stocks to project who their top competitors might be. One student even listened to an analysts' conference call with a company to find out more information.

"I told them that it's a long race and with stocks, you can't get too up or too down," he added.

That may be what consoles the TheLegGp. Their heavily tech-oriented portfolio of Panera Bread, Seagate Technologies, Alliant Techsystems, and Advanced Micro Devices, dipped when two of their better performers, Panera and Seagate, lost a combined $2.93 a share last week.

Fifteen of the 36 teams have increased their portfolios since the start, with the Weirdos, a team from Jones Junior High in Toledo, posting the biggest gain last week at 3.48 percent. Still, its imaginary portfolio overall is down.

Following are the participating teams, schools and cities, and portfolio values as of Friday:

1. Jobbers, Rossford Jr., $43,755.

2. TheLegGp, Bowling Green High, $43,596.

3. SJJ1, St. John's Jesuit, Toledo, $43,506.

4. NdaBlack, Otsego Middle, Grand Rapids, $43,203.

5. BlueStar, Jones Jr., Toledo, $42,921.

6. DECA-srs, Scott High, Toledo, $42,828.

7. Benjamin, Bowling Green High, $41,789.

8. PC DECA, Port Clinton High, $41,218.

9. Moneymen, county Educational Service Center, Genoa, $40,999.

10. ABEC, Rossford Jr., $40,626.

11. Mnybagz, Christ the King, Toledo, $40,354.

12. E.C.O.'s, Toledo Accelerated, $40,341.

13. $tars, county Educational Service Center, Genoa, $40,081.

14. DECA-jrs, Scott High, Toledo, $40,071.

15. TheBAAE's, Bowling Green High, $40,018.

16. Tizzie, Bowling Green High, $39,661.

17. Weirdos, Jones Jr., Toledo, $39,616.

18. ZapaloCo, Bluffton High, $39,499.

19. CaplEdge, Christ the King, Toledo, $39,404.

20. DaSmartz, Toth Elem., Perrysburg, $39,365.

21. Suniweck, Rossford Jr., $39,046.

22. BigBucks, St. Pius X, Toledo, $38,915.

23. $Makers, Toledo Accelerated, $38,460.

24. AveJohns, St. John's Jesuit, Toledo, $38,426.

25. Panthers, Stryker Elem., $38,275.

26. B-Dazzle, Bowling Green High, $38,156.

27. Strycool, Stryker Elem., $37,940.

28. KimsKids, Woodmore Elem., Woodville, $37,564.

29. Lions, Life Skills Center, Toledo, $37,393.

30. Rebels23, Bowsher High, Toledo, $37,108.

31. Lucky7's, Christ the King, Toledo, $36,942.

32. BG Stock, Bowling Green High, $36,478.

33. AH-Trade, Arbor Hills Jr., Sylvania, $36,236.

34. Ze Frans, Frank Elem., Perrysburg, $36,194.

35. Stockers, Fairfield Elem., Maumee, $35,388.

36. Prpl Cow, Clay High, Oregon, $33,913.

Contact Jon Chavez at:

jchavez@theblade.com

or 419-724-6128.



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