SILVER is the stock of the moment – just ask the Slovakian kindergarten teacher who has become a euro millionaire by “transacting heavily” on the commodity to win a trading contest run by European brokerage house XTB.

The 30-year-old teacher, known only by her trading name of “Rudinka”, surged ahead in the late stages of the XTB Trading Cup to make the biggest overall rate of return of €637,000 to win the life-changing cheque for €1m, presented at Bloomberg’s HQ last Friday.

“When others were selling, Rudinka took advantage of lower prices to take long positions and close them at market peaks, and she didn’t let herself get distracted by trading on too many markets,” said Alexander Orban, managing director of XTB UK.

The broker’s trading competition ran from 2 to 27 May, when thousands of professional and novice traders across Europe used XTB’s Contest Demo software to speculate on €30,000 each of virtual funds, with the trading returns monitored by Ernst & Young.

The three runners-up, who each won a Mercedes SLK, were a Polish biotechnology scientist known as “Wlodeka”; “Farciarz”, who had a “disciplined” approach to risk; and “Champion20”, a 20-something Austrian soldier who put “large positions” on silver.

THERE are keen golfers in the City… and then there is Patrick Claridge, chief executive of Merchant Securities, who loves the game so much he practises his swing at 6am in the fields of his agricultural farm near Epping before driving to work.

Not only that, but he also owns a second home on the course of The Links at Fancourt, the exclusive South African golf resort owned by software millionaire Hasso Plattner that has only 60 members worldwide. Perhaps Claridge needs to spend more time out there though, as the “weekend golfer” was disappointed to finish in twenty-fifth place in the three-day amateur tournament at his local Chigwell course at the weekend.

Functioning on less sleep than usual after staying up late to watch Rory McIlroy (right) win his first major tournament at the US Open on Sunday night, Claridge, who currently
plays on a handicap of eight, told The Capitalist: “I will be back next year to win.”

SPOTTED enjoying the first day of Wimbledon, wearing his committee members’ badge with panache: Bank of England governor Sir Mervyn King.

No doubt the seasoned Wimbledon visitor was keeping an eye on the rate of inflation of strawberries which, for the record, are selling for a modest £2.50 this year.

SCOTLAND met the Lebanon at Boisdale in Canary Wharf, when the Scottish restaurant’s head chef Andy Rose prepared a Lebanese feast served with Massaya wine from the Lebanon’s top viticulturist Sami Ghosn.

The sub-plot of the evening was the proposed joint venture between Ghosn and Boisdale’s owner Ranald Macdonald about opening a branch of Boisdale 30 miles outside Beirut in a site in the mountains, where Ghosn has a vineyard.

“We would build the restaurant as part of the winery and have spent many hours taking about this,” Macdonald told The Capitalist. You read it here first.