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“I buy on the assumption that they could close the market the next day and not reopen it for five years.”

— Warren Buffett

The Warren Buffett investment philosophy calls for a long-term investment horizon, where a five year holding period, or even longer, would fit right into the strategy. How would such a strategy have worked out for an investment into Apache Corp (NYSE: APA)? Today, we examine the outcome of a five year investment into the stock back in 2014.

Start date: 05/08/2014


End date: 05/07/2019
Start price/share: $88.03
End price/share: $30.51
Starting shares: 113.60
Ending shares: 125.81
Dividends reinvested/share: $5.00
Total return: -61.62%
Average annual return: -17.43%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $3,838.06

As shown above, the five year investment result worked out poorly, with an annualized rate of return of -17.43%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 5 years ago into $3,838.06 today (as of 05/07/2019). On a total return basis, that’s a result of -61.62% (something to think about: how might APA shares perform over the next 5 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that Apache Corp paid investors a total of $5.00/share in dividends over the 5 holding period, marking a second component of the total return beyond share price change alone. Much like watering a tree, reinvesting dividends can help an investment to grow over time — for the above calculations we assume dividend reinvestment (and for this exercise the closing price on ex-date is used for the reinvestment of a given dividend).

Based upon the most recent annualized dividend rate of 1/share, we calculate that APA has a current yield of approximately 3.28%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 1 against the original $88.03/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 3.73%.

More investment wisdom to ponder:
“Searching for companies is like looking for grubs under rocks: if you turn over 10 rocks you’ll likely find one grub; if you turn over 20 rocks you’ll find two.” — Peter Lynch