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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 ten year holding period possibly?

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

Start date: 08/11/2011


End date: 08/10/2021
Start price/share: $22.21
End price/share: $183.50
Starting shares: 450.25
Ending shares: 476.04
Dividends reinvested/share: $2.80
Total return: 773.54%
Average annual return: 24.19%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $87,373.92

As shown above, the ten year investment result worked out exceptionally well, with an annualized rate of return of 24.19%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $87,373.92 today (as of 08/10/2021). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 773.54% (something to think about: how might PKI shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that PerkinElmer, Inc. paid investors a total of $2.80/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 .28/share, we calculate that PKI has a current yield of approximately 0.15%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of .28 against the original $22.21/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 0.68%.

One more piece of investment wisdom to leave you with:
“Everyone has the brainpower to make money in stocks. Not everyone has the stomach. If you are susceptible to selling everything in a panic, you ought to avoid stocks and mutual funds altogether.” — Peter Lynch