A growing number of teenagers have been opening stock-trading accounts amid the Korea Composite Stock Price Index’ recent bull run.
Stock market insiders say high school students are jumping on the bandwagon. According to data from the Financial Supervisory Service, 291,080 accounts were held by juveniles from January to August 2020. In 2018 they held just 76,091.
As of August last year, the balance they held in their accounts totaled W547.4 billion, up sharply from W235.3 billion in 2018 (US$1=W1,095).
Changing attitudes among parents are prompting teenagers to follow suit. A YouTube video of Meritz Asset Management CEO John Lee advising parents two years ago to buy stocks for their kids instead of wasting money sending on private crammers has drawn more than 300,000 views as of last week.
Lee has since appeared on several TV shows and his comments seem to have touched a nerve.
One parent who opened a stock-trading account for his middle-schooler son last May said, “I helped my son open his own account to teach him about finances. I compare profits with my son and we study the stock market together.”
Cheon Kyu-seung of the Network for the Future Economic Education said, “It’s better to teach teenagers to approach stock investment from a long-term perspective to gain a better understanding of the economy rather than trying to make a quick buck.”
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