The gamification of stock trading

The gamification of stock trading
rawpixel / Pixabay

The mobile phone of today allows more than just calling and texting. It also allows us to track our funds and set up money management tools to help save funds for travel, a new car, or downpayment to a starter home. Yes, #financialgoals.

With the continuous advancement of technology, the mobile world has been conquered by games. It’s not only the thumb-cramping PUBG nor the block-building Minecraft that has dominated the mobile app world. Game mechanics are now being utilized in non-gaming tasks in different industries like promoting literacy, crowdsourcing solutions to end world hunger, and even permeating Wall Street. With all of these in mind, gamification was born.

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What exactly is gamification?

Gamification was discovered because some people need more than just mobile finance and money apps — they lack motivation. Games have a points system, and there are badges to be earned whenever you accomplish the goals of the game. Badges then can be used to claim rewards, whether real or virtual. The mechanics of the game also include having rankings and leaderboards to further motivate players into playing.

Before, people have a game downloaded on their phones that helps idle away time. But for someone that is looking for something that is more than tapping, swiping, and flicking, they might consider stock trading — the Wolf of Wall Street right in your pocket.

What is a stock market game?

Also dubbed as the stock market simulator, this is a mobile application that is programmed to imitate investing and trading on the stock market in a computer-generated environment. The purpose of each game is to teach how the stock market works and understanding the statistics.

How does gamification work for trading stocks?

Game designers have built these games to simulate stock market trading. Initially, players are given virtual currencies to start and play around to build up their portfolio. Users can trade on well-known companies such as Facebook and Amazon.

These goal-based investing scenarios are also “missions” where they can learn about the concepts of the stock exchange. Upon completing the mission or making trades, they will receive badges that they can convert into rewards and rank up. They also get bonuses if they made a positive return in their virtual portfolios. As the player grows bolder, they can then transition from virtual money to real cash. There are also leaderboards where friends can compete against each other who is the best in trading in different stock markets.

Who can benefit from gamification?

Stock market games are filled with vital resources that allow users to learn about stock markets based on rankings: beginner, advanced, and expert levels. Simulations from these games can be applied in a lot of ways: education, practice, and entertainment.

These apps are not only for the first-timers who are daunted to start but even for MBA students. According to a program director at the New Mexico State University, stock market applications get students to ponder more on their future financially in the world of high stakes marketing.

The top 3 stock market games of 2019

Working on both Android and iPhone operating systems, below are three games that teach strategies in the stock market.

NinjaTrader Free Trading Simulator

This trading platform started in 2003 and has all the features of the real stock market trading platform. You can even change the time period and it lets you see how you would have fared when trading during the 2008 recession.

Bear Bull Traders Simulator

This app teaches you how to start in Day Trading and familiarizes you with the stock market platform. Furthermore, this allows you to make the transition to the real trading platform and gives you technical support.

Thinkorswim by TD Ameritrade

A sophisticated mobile app that contains advanced trading and investing tools and has stock charts that track not only securities, but even goods such as oil and gold.


Today’s generation is increasingly becoming more digital. There are online sources that publish blogs that discuss financial concepts that people will always care about. Online gamification has been widely accepted because it b is user-friendly and easily accessible, plus there's an obvious fun factor. We’re seeing this trend not going away soon because the value of gamification is hard to overlook. The gamified approach is leaning towards appealing to millennials who may be intimidated by stock trading.

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While studying economics, Brendan found himself comfortably falling down the rabbit hole of restaurant work, ultimately opening a consulting business and working as a private wine buyer. On a whim, he moved to China, and in his first week following a triumphant pub quiz victory, he found himself bleeding on the floor based on his arrogance. The same man who put him there offered him a job lecturing for the University of Wales in various sister universities throughout the Middle Kingdom. While primarily lecturing in descriptive and comparative statistics, Brendan simultaneously earned an Msc in Banking and International Finance from the University of Wales-Bangor. He's presently doing something he hates, respecting French people. Well, two, his wife and her mother in the lovely town of Antigua, Guatemala. <i>To contact Brendan or give him an exclusive, please contact him at [email protected]</i>
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