Photo credit:

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

— Warren Buffett

The Warren Buffett investment philosophy calls for a long-term investment horizon, where a ten year holding period, or even longer, would fit right into the strategy. How would such a strategy have worked out for an investment into MetLife Inc (NYSE: MET)? Today, we examine the outcome of a ten year investment into the stock back in 2010.

Start date: 09/02/2010


End date: 09/01/2020
Start price/share: $35.77
End price/share: $38.50
Starting shares: 279.56
Ending shares: 382.39
Dividends reinvested/share: $13.01
Total return: 47.22%
Average annual return: 3.94%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $14,720.38

The above analysis shows the ten year investment result worked out as follows, with an annualized rate of return of 3.94%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $14,720.38 today (as of 09/01/2020). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 47.22% (something to think about: how might MET shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that MetLife Inc paid investors a total of $13.01/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 1.84/share, we calculate that MET has a current yield of approximately 4.78%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 1.84 against the original $35.77/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 13.36%.

More investment wisdom to ponder:
“Experience taught me a few things. One is to listen to your gut, no matter how good something sounds on paper. The second is that you’re generally better off sticking with what you know. And the third is that sometimes your best investments are the ones you don’t make.” — Donald Trump