Ethan and Alex Zhang Indulge in Stock Trading

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Courtesy of Alex Zhang

Alex and Ethan Zhang are in charge of the stock trading sect within the Finance and Stock Trading Club. Activities center around discussion of stock trading and new trends in the market.

Ethan and Alex huddle around a computer monitor, calculators and pencils in hand. A green graph is projected on screen, but it isn’t for math class: they’re actually tracking recent spikes in Gamestop’s stock value. When they are not busy with school work, juniors Alex and Ethan Zhang are trading stocks. The hobby is a new development in their lives, one that actualized after the two took a business course at Irvine Valley College in the summer of 2020. 

The Zhang brothers were already familiar with basic terminologies like ticker symbols and NASDAQ, but had not yet been involved in stocks themselves. During a unit on market indexes, they found that the stock market was a good avenue for making money and subsequently began to research. 

“When we were looking around, I sort of asked [my dad] about it,” Alex Zhang said. “It turns out, he’s a pretty avid investor, and since then, he’s been a guiding light for our hobby. He tells us what we should be looking for, the rules and disciplines, what we should pay attention to and what strategies really govern success in the stock market.”

Under their father’s guidance, they actualized strategies gathered from research, like minimizing risk and maximizing reward. 

This isn’t a video game. It’s a gamble. If you’re not doing your research, you’re just going to lose money.

— Alex Zhang

“This isn’t a video game,” Alex Zhang said. “It’s a gamble. If you’re not doing your research, you’re just going to lose money.”

Ethan Zhang’s portfolio took a loss last year in November after he made a premature trade. 

“I invested in a stock called Fuel Cell, which was worth around 3 dollars,” Ethan Zhang said. “I kept it for around three months, and then it went down to 2 cents. I thought the company would go bankrupt, so I sold them. But, around two months ago, the stock rose to 18 dollars. That was really a moment where I was hitting my head, because I could have made so much money with my 100 shares.”

Despite setbacks, both Zhangs have made money from stock trading, now stored in accounts overseen by their father. They view stock trading as a productive hobby in which their investments reap rewards.

I do have a job right now, and I make money from it,” Ethan Zhang said, “but I don’t want to blow it on something consumable when I can take the 200 dollars, put it in the stock market and watch it double.”

— Ethan Zhang

“I do have a job right now, and I make money from it,” Ethan Zhang said, “but I don’t want to blow it on something consumable when I can take the 200 dollars, put it in the stock market and watch it double.”