Call him the Wolf of Wall Street in training.
Mohammed Islam is a 17-year-old senior at New York City's prestigious Stuyvesant High School. But while the rest of his Stuyvesant peers have been stressing out over classwork and college applications, Islam says he has been laboring over a far more lucrative pursuit: trading stocks.
Islam, who was recently profiled in New York magazine, started trading penny stocks when he was 9. While the resourceful son of Bengali immigrants was at first scared away from the high-risk practice, he dove back in after reading up on the strategies of hedge-fund giants. He has since moved on to trading oil and gold, and while he won't confirm the $72 million figure that New York uses, he says his net worth is in the "high eight figures."
What does he planning on doing with all that money? Islam has already bought a BMW (which he can't drive until he gets his license) and rented a swanky Manhattan apartment (which he can't move into until he turns 18). While he plans on going to college next year, he and two friends have their sights set on launching their own hedge fund.
"It all comes down to this," Islam told New York. "What makes the world go round? Money. If money is not flowing, if businesses don't keep going, there's no innovation, no products, no investments, no growth, no jobs." This kid is going somewhere.
Update: Islam has denied the $72 million figure, and has since claimed he invented the whole story. New York magazine has changed its headline to shy away from that specific figure, but stands by the story. Jessica Pressler, the New York magazine reporter, said on Twitter that she saw a bank statement confirming eight figures, so she is "comfortable with what's in the piece."