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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 decade-long 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 Intuitive Surgical Inc (NASD: ISRG), by taking a look at the investment outcome over a decade-long holding period.

Start date: 11/05/2012


End date: 11/03/2022
Start price/share: $60.09
End price/share: $234.19
Starting shares: 166.42
Ending shares: 166.42
Dividends reinvested/share: $0.00
Total return: 289.73%
Average annual return: 14.58%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $38,987.58

The above analysis shows the decade-long investment result worked out quite well, with an annualized rate of return of 14.58%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $38,987.58 today (as of 11/03/2022). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 289.73% (something to think about: how might ISRG shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

One more piece of investment wisdom to leave you with:
“When everyone is going right, look left.” — Sam Zell