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Jeffrey S. Chiesa,
Attorney General

Division of Consumer Affairs
Eric T. Kanefsky, Acting Director

 

 

For Immediate Release:
May 21, 2012
For Further Information Contact:
Jeff Lamm, 973-504-6327
Neal Buccino, 973-504-6327

 


Irvington High School wins Division of Consumer Affairs’
16th Annual High School Consumer Bowl

The 2012 Consumer Bowl champion team, representing Irvington High School. From Left: Kadeem Willis, Jenny Michel, Brittany Newby, Cassandre Louis, Chaimaka Udoye,, Josemar Adames, and teacher/advisor Joseph Roman
The 2012 Consumer Bowl champion team, representing Irvington High School.
From Left: Kadeem Willis, Jenny Michel, Brittany Newby, Cassandre Louis, Chiamaka Udoye,, Josemar Adames, and teacher/advisor Joseph Roman
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TRENTON - Question: One type of investment fraud involves misconduct by brokers with control of investor accounts. If a broker conducts unnecessary buying and selling within a client’s account, solely to generate extra commissions for himself, and not for the benefit of the investor, the broker is acting unethically and may be breaking the law.  The investor may end up paying more in commissions than he or she earns on the investments.  What is the name of this scam?

The New Jersey High School Consumer Bowl team from Irvington High Schoolhad the answer: That particular investment scam is called “churning.”

With that correct response to the final question, the Irvingtonteam became the victor today, in the State Division of Consumer Affairs’ 16th annual High School Consumer Bowl competition.

“The Division of Consumer Affairs fights hard for consumers, and takes bold steps to hold businesses accountable to our consumer protection laws,” Attorney General Jeffrey S. Chiesa said.  “But we know the single best way to prevent fraud is to promote consumer awareness, and give everyday citizens the knowledge and tools to protect themselves.  The Consumer Bowl provides that awareness in the form of a tough competition to find the best-informed school in New Jersey.  All of the students who participate do an important service not just for themselves, but for their families, friends, and future careers.”

Of the other two finalists, Freehold Township High School placed second, with 105 points, and Moorestown Friends School came in third, with 70 points. The final competition was held today at the Richard J. Hughes Justice Complexin Trenton.  Irvington High School won with 110 points.

“The winning team from Irvington High School and the finalists from Freehold Township High School and Moorestown Friends School are among the best-informed consumers of any age group in New Jersey,” Eric T. Kanefsky, Acting Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs, said.  “They are well equipped to use their knowledge of consumers’ rights, and New Jersey’s consumer protection laws; when buying a car or home; signing a contract; making purchases, investments and charitable donations; and beginning their careers.  I am very proud of the example these well-informed students are setting for their peers and communities.”

A total of 90 schools entered the 2012 Consumer Bowl, which began with countywide competitions in January. The teams from Irvington High School, Freehold Township High School and Moorestown Friends School succeeded at the county level and at the regional competitions, held in April; they came into today’s final competition as the top teams from North, Central, and South Jersey, respectively.

The competition this year was intense, and included three high performing teams. Freehold Township High School was the Consumer Bowl’s 2011 statewide winner.  Irvington High School was the 2010 statewide winner.  Moorestown Friends School first joined the Consumer Bowl competition last year, but in both of its first two years it swept the county and regional competitions, to represent South Jersey in the final.

The High School Consumer Bowl is part of the NJ Division of Consumer Affairs’ effort to empower New Jersey’s consumers with the information needed to protect themselves against fraud, and make the most of their hard-earned money.

The Consumer Bowl uses a game-show format to test students’ knowledge of consumer rights and related issues. Topics include Ponzi schemes and investment fraud, the purchase and leasing of new and used vehicles, regulated businesses such as health clubs, consumers’ rights when making retail purchases, and general knowledge of the State’s consumer protection laws and regulations.

The following students represented Irvington High School in today’s final competition:

  • Brittany Newby, Team Captain
  • Josmar Adames
  • Cassandre Louis
  • Jenny Michel
  • Chiamaka Udoye
  • Kadeem Willis

The following students represented Freehold Township High School:

  • Samatha Fitzgerald, Team Captain
  • Joanna D’Avella
  • Mark Rinder
  • Samantha Sanchez
  • Morgan Thompson

The following students represented Moorestown Friends School team:

  • Amanda Connell, Team Captain
  • Spencer Bard
  • Aviana Duca
  • Kirsten Mullen
  • Trinh Son

Schools interested in competing in next year’s Consumer Bowl competition may contact the State Division of Consumer Affairs at 973-504-6241.

Consumers who believe they have been cheated or scammed by a business, or suspect any other form of consumer abuse, can file a complaint with the State Division of Consumer Affairs by visiting its website or by calling 1-800-242-5846 (toll free within New Jersey ) or 973-504-6200.

Follow the Division of Consumer Affairs on Facebook, and check our online calendar of upcoming Consumer Outreach events.

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