Florida Housewife Wins $150,000 in Beat the Street 2.0

Rebecca Smith found shorting was a good way to rack up gains.
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Rebecca Smith, a 50-year-old housewife from New Port Richey, Fla., won the $150,000 grand prize in TheStreet.com's Beat the Street Contest, the company announced Monday.

Smith, who calls herself a novice investor, racked up an overall return of 786% in the Beat the Street Contest. She used a strategy of searching business news for stocks she believed were overvalued. Once her research confirmed her suspicion, Smith would then short the stock.

"I focused on biotech until it began to slow down, and then the subprime problems were all over the news, so that is where I turned my attention," Smith said. "It was easier to make a profit shorting, rather than going long. I saw that I need to take partial profits when the stock was moving fast, and I would short and lock in profits throughout the day."

Smith and her husband, Eric, arrived in New York Sunday afternoon to spend two days in the city and receive her grand prize check from Tom Clarke, TheStreet.com's chairman and chief executive officer. TheStreet.com said the check presentation was scheduled for Monday morning around 11 a.m. EDT.

"I'm absolutely thrilled to be here," Rebecca Smith said. "This is very exciting."

She said that she plans to use part of her $150,000 prize money to pay down her mortgage and then give some to her children.

Beat the Street 2.0 is sponsored by VW Passat and Zecco.