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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

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 five year holding period for an investor who was considering Garmin Ltd (NASD: GRMN) back in 2015, bought the stock, ignored the market’s ups and downs, and simply held through to today.

Start date: 02/02/2015


End date: 01/30/2020
Start price/share: $52.60
End price/share: $99.32
Starting shares: 190.11
Ending shares: 230.37
Dividends reinvested/share: $10.43
Total return: 128.80%
Average annual return: 18.02%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $22,876.19

As shown above, the five year investment result worked out exceptionally well, with an annualized rate of return of 18.02%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 5 years ago into $22,876.19 today (as of 01/30/2020). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 128.80% (something to think about: how might GRMN shares perform over the next 5 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that Garmin Ltd paid investors a total of $10.43/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 2.28/share, we calculate that GRMN has a current yield of approximately 2.30%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 2.28 against the original $52.60/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 4.37%.

Another great investment quote to think about:
“The best way to measure your investing success is not by whether you’re beating the market but by whether you’ve put in place a financial plan and a behavioral discipline that are likely to get you where you want to go.” — Benjamin Graham