Mark Koba is a senior editor at CNBC.com. Topics for his feature story writing include the business of politics, health care, employment and the economy.
Before working at CNBC.com, he spent 11 years at Bloomberg LP, where among various duties, he was program producer for the award-winning "Bloomberg Small Business" television show.
Koba's background includes a decade of news writing and show producing at CNN, E! Entertainment Television, ABC's "World News Now," "Good Morning America" and CBS' "This Morning."
Follow Mark Koba on Twitter @MarkKobaCNBC.
Okay--here's a look at the current standings and what people are doing. Scott Wrynn is the first leader to have made a trade that lost money, though a small amount. His portfolio is worth $1,697,660.24 as of Monday's 4 pm close. His first trade on 3/5 was Fremont General and he went almost all-in buying 168,000 shares at $5.89 per share or $989,000.
Our celebrity trading has begun--so it's time to see where the stars "stand." Not all have traded yet but for those that have, it seems their approach to investing is more conservative than the majority of our non-celeb leaders--with more stable companies and purchases spread across multiple stocks.
Jonathan Tucker currently stars as Tommy Donnelly in NBC's "The Black Donnellys" and has appeared in several motion pictures. But it seems he's not only an actor--but a devoted fan of CNBC's "Mad Money." That could come in handy--as Jonathan is the celeb playing for "Street Signs" in "Trading With The Stars."
James Cromwell has been nominated for three Emmys and one supporting actor Oscar--for his role in "Babe." He also played Prince Phillip in one of this year's Oscar winners, "The Queen." He currently stars in Fox's "24." And he's going to be in the upcoming "Spider Man 3."
Judy Gold is an Emmy-winning comedienne and hosts HBO's "At the Multiplex with Judy Gold". She's also the celeb on the first hour of "Morning Call" for our Trading With The Stars portion of our portfolio challenge. She says she's out to win it all.
Friday Night's OTM had an interesting conversation with a former and current contestant: Chris Thomson. Chris is a buy-side analyst with a money management firm. He was in the top five from last year's Squawk Box Portfolio Challenge--so he knows where of he speaks.
We're adding some "star power" to the Million Dollar Portfolio Challenge. In conjunction with the Challenge, we're pitting CNBC program against program and celebrity against celebrity to see who has the best stock-trading chops.