What began as a search for pocket money has now become a serious career for students deprived of physical classes.
Gripped by the pandemic and devoid of social contacts, students have fallen in love with the stock market and are seeing it as an opportunity to gain financial autonomy.
“I have seen my father trading and that triggered my interest,” said Adnan Khan who is preparing for CET. “It’s a good learning experience though I lost some money initially. I’m using my father’s money and am sharing the profits and losses with him.”
Siddhant, a BSc Biotechnology student, was one of many who took a plunge into the stock market during the second wave.
Part of the International Baccalaureate–IB Diploma Club, Siddhant’s class 12 exams were postponed and he had six months to kill before joining college.
‘Why work 9 am to 5 pm?’
“I began reading about stock trading,” Siddhant said. “I don’t see it as a platform to make money, but a platform to gain financial independence at a young age.”
Having earned a profit of Rs 4,000 in half an hour of trading with Rs 10,000, Siddhant said nothing else attracts him anymore. “I even think why people still work from 9 am to 5 pm instead of getting into stock trading,” he said.
Using Rs 2.5 lakh his parents gave, Siddhant made Rs 1 lakh. His aim is to earn enough money to pay his fees next year so that he does not have to depend on his parents for pocket money.
Watching his grandfather invest in stock markets, class 11 student Aryaman Joshi began researching more about it.
“Reading Robert Kiyosaki’s ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ enhanced my financial literacy and got me interested in financial independence,” he said.
“That’s when I decided to start trading stocks. I watched YouTube videos, called up people to know more about stock trading, cold-mailed some and started to learn from the institutes.”
Joshi also took part in a stock trading competition at the Wharton School of Business in the US, which strengthened his resolve to learn stock trading and make money.
“Also, many students depend on their parents for money, which I don’t want to do. I want to lead a financially independent life,” he said, adding, “I would do it in such a way that I don’t have to get a job.”
What industry experts have to say
Ritvik Vipin, chairman of Havenspire, an ed-tech start-up in the stock trading coaching business, said: “Students are exposed to the recent crypto hype where they saw people make 10 times their investments in a matter of a few months. Also, there is a lot of TV series about people making insane profits from the stock market. This, I think, makes them really curious about crypto, stock market and mutual funds.”
“Secondly, I think students like the idea of making money without working for someone else. All you need is a laptop and an internet connection to make money. Being your own boss is something almost all students would consider as a great career goal,” he added.
Akash Jayan, a young entrepreneur, dubbed stock trading an alternate skill.
“It directly helps students make money at their fingertips. Being able to make even Rs 500 or Rs 1,000 a day during college days is a big thing for a student. Anyone can trade. It is all about the time they require to study it.”