Photo credit:

“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 American Airlines Group Inc (NASD: AAL)? Today, we examine the outcome of a five year investment into the stock back in 2015.

Start date: 12/14/2015


End date: 12/11/2020
Start price/share: $41.77
End price/share: $17.05
Starting shares: 239.41
Ending shares: 250.54
Dividends reinvested/share: $1.70
Total return: -57.28%
Average annual return: -15.65%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $4,271.97

As shown above, the five year investment result worked out poorly, with an annualized rate of return of -15.65%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 5 years ago into $4,271.97 today (as of 12/11/2020). On a total return basis, that’s a result of -57.28% (something to think about: how might AAL shares perform over the next 5 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that American Airlines Group Inc paid investors a total of $1.70/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 .4/share, we calculate that AAL has a current yield of approximately 0.00%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of .4 against the original $41.77/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 0.00%.

Here’s one more great investment quote before you go:
“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