Legacy student writes top investment essay

A Legacy Christian Academy (LCA) seventh grader’s in-depth analysis about the good stock prospects for a real-life gold company impressed people in the business industry.

Madison Finstad, seventh-grade Legacy Christian Academy student, wrote an essay on the Barrick Gold Corporation that was named the top essay in the state in the InvestWrite competition. Photo by Eric Hagen

Madison Finstad, seventh-grade Legacy Christian Academy student, wrote an essay on the Barrick Gold Corporation that was named the top essay in the state in the InvestWrite competition. Photo by Eric Hagen

Madison Finstad recently found out that her essay was judged to be the best among Minnesota students that were submitted in a nationwide contest.

LCA teacher Kristi Person said as part of the seventh-grade computer applications course she teaches, each student participates in the Minnesota Stock Market Game. A Minnesota non-profit organization, BestPrep, seeks to prepare students for their adult working lives by giving them helpful business, career and financial lessons. The stock market game is one of these lessons it sponsors.

The InvestWrite essay is part of this contest in Minnesota and in other states. The national winner will be flown to a ceremony in New York City.

As the Minnesota state winner, Finstad will be recognized at a May 23 banquet at the Earle Brown Heritage Center in Brooklyn Center, according to Rachel Schwalbach, manager of the stock market game for BestPrep.

Finstad wrote her essay on the Barrick Gold Corporation. She went on Yahoo! Finance, Seeking Alpha, Scott Trader, Bloomberg and Wikipedia to research the history of the company and its stock performance and came away impressed.

“Barrick has a proven track record of being responsible with their investors’ money and even despite the current economic situations, the price of gold will most likely continue to increase, in turn increasing the value of their stock,” Finstad’s essay concluded.

According to Finstad’s research, Barrick’s price per share was $30 in 2007. At her last check in the fall of 2011, the price was approximately $55 per share. Barrick reported revenue growth of nearly 50 percent, year after year.

According to Schwalbach, more than 3,600 InvestWrite essays were judged nationally. This included approximately 1,550 high school students, nearly 1,380 middle school students and about 700 elementary students.

Schwalbach did not have information on how many essays were from Minnesota.

Eric Hagen is at eric.hagen@ecm-inc.com


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