TheStreet.com's Investment Challenge
has a new leader.
Brian Tingley added $3,771,050 to his portfolio last week, which, while not the biggest weekly gain, still pushed his total portfolio to $17,593,142. That put him ahead of Chris Jorgensen, who held the top spot for five weeks running. Jorgensen finished the week in the No. 2 overall spot.
Tingley's big jump didn't come easy. It took a lot of big trades.
"I have so many trades that when I scan through the history, it is very difficult to find any standouts," Tingley says.
But Tingley recalls two trades last week that helped bump his portfolio up a notch. He shorted 600,000 shares of
and 900,000 shares of
for a combined profit of about $1.6 million.
Success, however, has its price, and Tingley is beginning to feel the sting. He feels pressure to trade heavily and continue to take big risks to sustain his lead in the challenge, but he wouldn't have it any other way.
"I have been trading larger numbers of shares, and I had a very hard time making money," Tingley says. "I really have to slow down and play it safer, but that really takes the fun out of it. So, forget it, I am going to short a million shares of
. ... Not really, my wife would kill me -- she loves Martha."
The week's first-place gainer was Richard Marra, of Glen Oaks, N.Y., who more than doubled his portfolio last week, increasing it by $5,413,375 to $9,932,740. He finished the week in the No. 4 overall spot.
Joseph Cioffi, of Centereach, N.Y., improved his position by placing second for the week, boosting his portfolio by $4,522,493 to a total of $11,052,285. Cioffi found profits on both sides of the table, buying and shorting about 250,000 shares of
, making almost $2 million in the process. However, he did lose money on the
IPO, where he was caught long on it while it dropped a couple of points. Cioffi ended the week claiming the No. 3 overall spot in the challenge.
Finishing the week with the fourth-biggest gain was Andrew Kahn, of Monmouth Beach, N.J., pushing his portfolio up by $3,337,422 to a total value of $3,784,647, placing him ninth overall. Kahn, who invests for a living, mainly played
Standard & Poor's 100
index options to make his substantial gains.
The fifth-place gainer was Paul Berliner, of Bellmore, N.Y., who works for a financial research firm. He increased his portfolio by $1,446,966 to end the week with a total of $1,649,757, placing him in the No. 21 overall spot.