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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 C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Inc. (NASD: CHRW) 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: 12/06/2011


End date: 12/03/2021
Start price/share: $68.54
End price/share: $97.00
Starting shares: 145.90
Ending shares: 184.01
Dividends reinvested/share: $17.08
Total return: 78.49%
Average annual return: 5.96%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $17,841.01

As we can see, the decade-long investment result worked out well, with an annualized rate of return of 5.96%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $17,841.01 today (as of 12/03/2021). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 78.49% (something to think about: how might CHRW shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Inc. paid investors a total of $17.08/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 2.04/share, we calculate that CHRW has a current yield of approximately 2.10%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 2.04 against the original $68.54/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 3.06%.

One more investment quote to leave you with:
“Never is there a better time to buy a stock than when a basically sound company, for whatever reason, temporarily falls out of favor with the investment community.” — Geraldine Weiss