Popular live streaming platform Twitch is currently streaming Wall Street bets via the latest installment of “Twitch Plays.”
Amazon engineer Mike Roberts started it all when he turned over $50,000 of his own cash to let Twitch users invest in the real-life stock market through his StockStream channel. So far, over 316,080 have viewed or participated in the live trading since it began.
Here is how the whole thing operates: Beginning daily at 9AM E.T. the stream opens for trades, then every five minutes kicks off a new round of voting on which stocks to buy and sell, at the end of the five minutes the top voted stocks get added or removed from Mike’s portfolio automatically by way of the Robinhood app. When the portfolio falls below $25,000 the game will be over.
Mike told Polygon, “I’d seen the idea posted around on some subreddits, so just decided to build it. I just read peoples buy/sell commands from the chat window, do a simple counting of each vote, take the top vote and place that trade. That part of the system was actually easy to build — the tough part was building the UI and getting the system to a stable point where it was ready [for] long term usage.”