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“Someone’s sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.”

— Warren Buffett

The investment philosophy practiced by Warren Buffett calls for investors to take a long-term horizon when making an investment, such as a two-decade holding period (or even longer), and reconsider making the investment in the first place if unable to envision holding the stock for at least five years. Today, we look at how such a long-term strategy would have done for investors in Zions Bancorporation, N.A. (NASD: ZION) back in 1999, holding through to today.

Start date: 05/06/1999


End date: 05/03/2019
Start price/share: $62.50
End price/share: $50.05
Starting shares: 160.00
Ending shares: 211.21
Dividends reinvested/share: $14.64
Total return: 5.71%
Average annual return: 0.28%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $10,575.31

As we can see, the two-decade investment result worked out as follows, with an annualized rate of return of 0.28%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 20 years ago into $10,575.31 today (as of 05/03/2019). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 5.71% (something to think about: how might ZION shares perform over the next 20 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Always an important consideration with a dividend-paying company is: should we reinvest our dividends?Over the past 20 years, Zions Bancorporation, N.A. has paid $14.64/share in dividends. For the above analysis, we assume that the investor reinvests dividends into new shares of stock (for the above calculations, the reinvestment is performed using closing price on ex-div date for that dividend).

Based upon the most recent annualized dividend rate of 1.2/share, we calculate that ZION has a current yield of approximately 2.40%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 1.2 against the original $62.50/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 3.84%.

Another great investment quote to think about:
“When I was young I thought that money was the most important thing in life; now that I am old I know that it is.” — Oscar Wilde