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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

Investors can learn a lot from Warren Buffett, whose above quote teaches the importance of thinking about investment time horizon, and asking ourselves before buying any given stock: can we envision holding onto it for years — even a decade-long holding period possibly?

Suppose a “buy-and-hold” investor was considering an investment into ABIOMED, Inc. (NASD: ABMD) back in 2011: back then, such an investor may have been pondering this very same question. Had they answered “yes” to a full decade-long investment time horizon and then actually held for these past 10 years, here’s how that investment would have turned out.

Start date: 03/15/2011


End date: 03/12/2021
Start price/share: $13.74
End price/share: $303.55
Starting shares: 727.80
Ending shares: 727.80
Dividends reinvested/share: $0.00
Total return: 2,109.24%
Average annual return: 36.28%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $220,963.86

As we can see, the decade-long investment result worked out exceptionally well, with an annualized rate of return of 36.28%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $220,963.86 today (as of 03/12/2021). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 2,109.24% (something to think about: how might ABMD shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

More investment wisdom to ponder:
“Nearly every time I strayed from the herd, I’ve made a lot of money. Wandering away from the action is the way to find the new action.” — Jim Rogers