Thursday | November 23, 2017
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Paauilo students make big bucks on stock market

Paauilo Elementary and Intermediate School students won both first and second place in the Hawaii Stock Market Simulation (SMS) Elementary Division for the Hawaii Council on Economics Education this past semester. The winners were Austin Parel and Naphtalee Ubarre, who each won $50 savings bonds. The second-place winners were Charlotte Taylor and Coco Romano Giordano, who each won $25 gift cards.

This was a statewide economics competition in which more than 300 teams competed. Students were exposed to the principles of economics and learned how to effectively invest. The school’s top team had a return of over 18 percent at one point — a return much higher than the average of brokers.

The Hawaii Council on Economic Education is the premier educational organization devoted to improving financial literacy among elementary, middle and high school students. For 40 years, the council has been helping young people develop effective ways of economic thinking and problem solving, preparing them to be informed citizens and consumers, prudent savers and investors, and successful managers and workers. The ultimate goal is to produce a generation of knowledgeable participants in the local, national and world economies.

The Hawaii SMS is the only stock market simulation endorsed by the Hawaii Council on Economic Education. It has an outstanding national reputation for successfully engaging students and teachers and producing exciting results in economic education and financial literacy.

Let’s listen in on the interviews with seventh-grade winners Austin, Naphtalee, Charlotte and Coco.

What has been your experience with the Hawaii SMS game?

“When we bought the stocks, we bought Apple. It went down and then went back up by a crazy percentage. We bought it around $500 and it went all the way up to $630,” commented Austin.

Did you do any type of research on the stocks/companies you were interested in?

“Yeah, we did on Yahoo finance. We also looked on the iPod touch stock app, which shows charts and how much they were going on,” said Naphtalee.

And how did you choose what stocks to buy?

“We chose the things that we liked. We researched stocks using Yahoo finance and took advice from other individuals. We chose Apple because it is worth a lot and it went up really fast. Even if it goes down, you know it’s going to come back up because it’s one of those popular brands,” followed Coco.

Were there any surprises or funny stories this semester?

“We were very interested in the Buffalo Wild Wings stock. We love eating Buffalo Wild Wings. It was a cheap stock ($30) and it was wild wings. People buy gold and silver, but we bought buffalo wild wings. We also bought Dr. Pepper, too, but it was part of a bunch of companies put together,” explained Charlotte.

Do your parents have their own investment portfolio or buy/sell stocks themselves?

“Our parents do not have an investment portfolio. Nope. They are not rich. Where we come from, we see dogs running around, lots of children running around. I live by an old sugar cane plantation that closed down. I never did know about stocks before this competition, so it has been good to know that even a kid from the country can win such a big competition,” elaborated Austin.


Legacy: Turning Memories into Memoirs is Thursdays, May 24-June 7, from 10 a.m. to noon, with a cost of $50, and will be held at the North Hawaii Education and Research Center, NHERC. Preserve your family history for future generations and make your ancestors come alive on paper! This course includes a blend of exploration of memoir types and forms, in-class writing explorations, and some basic techniques for researching, recording, and organizing stories. Participants are encouraged to bring an object or picture that has special history/meaning. For more information or to register, please call NHERC at 775-8890.


The Kukuihaele School Reunion and Community Celebration is at Kukuihaele Park this coming Saturday, May 26, from 10 a.m. to pau. Please bring a dish to share in the potluck and enjoy entertainment by Kanikapila. For more information, please call Kuulei Badua at 775-9894. Invited is everyone who went to Kukuihaele School, who used to or now lives in Kukuihaele as well as everyone who live in Kapulena in the past as well as now.

Old photos from the Paul Christian collection, as well as other collections, will be shown by Momi Naughton of Hamakua Heritage Center. You are encouraged to share copies from your own collections. Later, the desire is to put these photos into book form to be sold to benefit Waipio Education Center/Museum at Waipio Lookout.

Each year everyone has a very good time and all are looking forward to another day of memories and good fun.


Every Memorial Day weekend, a group of folks gather at the Hakalau Baseball Park next to the Hakalau Veterans Memorial. This year, Saturday, May 26, at 10 a.m., we will gather to honor and call forth the names of all the soldiers who fought and died in wars past. And we will sit looking out at the swaying palm trees and the brilliant blue skies, and humbly give gratitude for their commitment to their country, to their families and to us at home.

Come join this quiet simple service led by Rev. Wansa. Veteran Ken Fujimoto of Ninole will share his reflections. Refreshments to follow at the Hakalau Jodo Mission.


The Hilo-Hamakua Community Development Corporation invites you to its annual meeting on Thursday, May 31, at 6 p.m. at NHERC. A potluck starts the event and the meeting starts at 7 p.m. New members will be accepted and past accomplishments reviewed. Please join us. Call 895-1907 for more info.

Carol Yurth’s column is published every Sunday and spotlights activities on the Hilo-Hamakua coast. She welcomes items for her column. Reach her by mail (46-1240 Kalehua Road, Honokaa HI 96727) at least 10 days before the requested publication date, call her at 775-7101, or e-mail