How Reddit Beat Wall Street


Beau Caporale , Web Manager

On Jan. 25, the unthinkable happened – normal people beat Wallstreet and the internet and stock market community have been buzzing over GameStop. GameStop is a video game and merchandise retailer whose stock had risen to huge prices because of recent events. This entire event was triggered by an orchestrated buyout of shares on a Reddit subreddit called WallStreetBets (WSB). WallStreetBets is a text-forum community that discusses aggressive stock trading strategies and ignores fundamental investment strategies. WSB planned an event where members of the community would buy large amounts of the share at the same time in order to drive the price “to the moon.”

Josh Sevy, a senior at Rocky Mountain, says “It has been crazy seeing GameStop go up so high. All because of people on Reddit who decided to buy a lot.”  

GameStop’s stock has risen from a combination of WallStreetBets, large media attention, the fear of missing out, and stock market mechanics. Thousands of people were hearing about the money people were making off GameStop and wanted to join in on the excitement. These new people bought shares and drove prices even higher. Stocks of a company are a limited resource, so as shares become lower and demand is still high – the price goes up. During this buy up, popular stock trading platform Robinhood suspending buying of the stock to help stabilize prices. This outraged many shareholders of GameStop and members of WSB.  

The Rocky Roar newspaper interviewed Zach Kooyman, a Rocky senior, about GameStop and Robinhood: “GameStop’s stock has gone up so much because everyone was buying it and the price went crazy. I wish I could have gotten in and made some money. I didn’t invest but followed the story and what was going on. I saw what Robinhood did with stopping trade. I don’t agree with that at all.”

It is unsure whether an event like this will happen again under similar circumstances. Trading platforms are now more aware of this type of activity. WallStreetBets has shown that normal people can take financial powers into their own hands and compete against the ultrarich of Wallstreet. 

Senior Justin Kozlowski says, “This has shown that enough people getting together can have power, even in the world of trading.”