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“Only buy something that you’d be perfectly happy to hold if the market shut down for 10 years.”

— Warren Buffett

One of the most important things investors can learn from Warren Buffett, is about how they approach their time horizon for an investment into a stock under consideration. Because immediately after buying shares of a given stock, investors will then be able to check on the day-to-day (and even minute-by-minute) market value. Some days the stock market will be up, other days down. These daily fluctuations can often distract from the long-term view. Today, we look at the result of a decade-long holding period for an investor who was considering Eastman Chemical Co (NYSE: EMN) back in 2009, bought the stock, ignored the market’s ups and downs, and simply held through to today.

Start date: 05/04/2009


End date: 05/02/2019
Start price/share: $21.13
End price/share: $77.63
Starting shares: 473.26
Ending shares: 600.64
Dividends reinvested/share: $14.88
Total return: 366.28%
Average annual return: 16.64%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $46,609.57

As we can see, the decade-long investment result worked out exceptionally well, with an annualized rate of return of 16.64%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $46,609.57 today (as of 05/02/2019). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 366.28% (something to think about: how might EMN shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that Eastman Chemical Co paid investors a total of $14.88/share in dividends over the 10 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 2.48/share, we calculate that EMN has a current yield of approximately 3.19%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 2.48 against the original $21.13/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 15.10%.

Another great investment quote to think about:
“Far more money has been lost by investors trying to anticipate corrections, than lost in the corrections themselves.” — Peter Lynch