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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 Entergy Corp (NYSE: ETR), by taking a look at the investment outcome over a decade-long holding period.

Start date: 12/19/2012


End date: 12/16/2022
Start price/share: $64.26
End price/share: $114.45
Starting shares: 155.62
Ending shares: 237.43
Dividends reinvested/share: $35.84
Total return: 171.73%
Average annual return: 10.52%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $27,182.52

The above analysis shows the decade-long investment result worked out quite well, with an annualized rate of return of 10.52%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $27,182.52 today (as of 12/16/2022). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 171.73% (something to think about: how might ETR shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that Entergy Corp paid investors a total of $35.84/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 4.28/share, we calculate that ETR has a current yield of approximately 3.74%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 4.28 against the original $64.26/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 5.82%.

One more investment quote to leave you with:
“Most investors want to do today what they should have done yesterday.” — Larry Summers