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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 2012, and take a look at what happened to investors who asked that very question about United Airlines Holdings Inc (NASD: UAL), by taking a look at the investment outcome over a ten year holding period.

Start date: 03/05/2012


End date: 03/02/2022
Start price/share: $20.47
End price/share: $42.42
Starting shares: 488.52
Ending shares: 488.52
Dividends reinvested/share: $0.00
Total return: 107.23%
Average annual return: 7.56%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $20,721.50

As we can see, the ten year investment result worked out well, with an annualized rate of return of 7.56%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $20,721.50 today (as of 03/02/2022). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 107.23% (something to think about: how might UAL shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Another great investment quote to think about:
“Taking risks is really the only way to consistently achieve above-average returns.” — Sam Zell