Photo credit:

“I buy on the assumption that they could close the market the next day and not reopen it for five 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 five year holding period. Suppose such a “buy-and-hold” investor had looked into buying shares of Akamai Technologies Inc (NASD: AKAM) back in 2017. Let’s take a look at how such an investment would have worked out for that buy-and-hold investor:

Start date: 12/11/2017


End date: 12/08/2022
Start price/share: $56.55
End price/share: $89.93
Starting shares: 176.83
Ending shares: 176.83
Dividends reinvested/share: $0.00
Total return: 59.03%
Average annual return: 9.73%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $15,900.32

As shown above, the five year investment result worked out well, with an annualized rate of return of 9.73%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 5 years ago into $15,900.32 today (as of 12/08/2022). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 59.03% (something to think about: how might AKAM shares perform over the next 5 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

More investment wisdom to ponder:
“The function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable.” — John Galbraith