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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 wisdom of Warren Buffett reflects a value-based philosophy about investing that says investors are buying shares in a business, and encourages strategic thinking about investment time horizon. Before placing a buy order for a stock, a great question we can ask is whether we would still be comfortable making the investment if we couldn’t sell it for many years?

A “buy-and-hold” approach may call for a time horizon that spans a long period of time — maybe even lasting for a ten year holding period. Suppose such a “buy-and-hold” investor had looked into buying shares of Teledyne Technologies Inc (NYSE: TDY) back in 2011. Let’s take a look at how such an investment would have worked out for that buy-and-hold investor:

Start date: 09/19/2011


End date: 09/16/2021
Start price/share: $52.08
End price/share: $427.96
Starting shares: 192.01
Ending shares: 192.01
Dividends reinvested/share: $0.00
Total return: 721.74%
Average annual return: 23.44%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $82,140.84

As shown above, the ten year investment result worked out exceptionally well, with an annualized rate of return of 23.44%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $82,140.84 today (as of 09/16/2021). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 721.74% (something to think about: how might TDY shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Here’s one more great investment quote before you go:
“It’s not always easy to do what’s not popular, but that’s where you make your money. Buy stocks that look bad to less careful investors and hang on until their real value is recognized.” — John Neff