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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

The above quote from Warren Buffett is timeless, and brings into focus the choice about time horizon that any investor should think about before buying a stock they are considering. Behind every stock is an actual business; what will that business look like over a ten year period?

Today, let’s look backwards in time to 2011, and take a look at what happened to investors who asked that very question about Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE: PG), by taking a look at the investment outcome over a ten year holding period.

Start date: 03/17/2011


End date: 03/16/2021
Start price/share: $60.43
End price/share: $128.94
Starting shares: 165.48
Ending shares: 225.24
Dividends reinvested/share: $26.44
Total return: 190.43%
Average annual return: 11.24%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $29,031.09

As shown above, the ten year investment result worked out quite well, with an annualized rate of return of 11.24%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $29,031.09 today (as of 03/16/2021). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 190.43% (something to think about: how might PG shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that Procter & Gamble Company paid investors a total of $26.44/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 3.1628/share, we calculate that PG has a current yield of approximately 2.45%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 3.1628 against the original $60.43/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 4.05%.

More investment wisdom to ponder:
“Anyone who is not investing now is missing a tremendous opportunity.” — Carlos Slim