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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 2013, and take a look at what happened to investors who asked that very question about Lowe’s Companies Inc (NYSE: LOW), by taking a look at the investment outcome over a decade-long holding period.

Start date: 03/04/2013


End date: 03/01/2023
Start price/share: $38.43
End price/share: $194.31
Starting shares: 260.21
Ending shares: 309.32
Dividends reinvested/share: $18.78
Total return: 501.05%
Average annual return: 19.65%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $60,105.41

As shown above, the decade-long investment result worked out exceptionally well, with an annualized rate of return of 19.65%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $60,105.41 today (as of 03/01/2023). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 501.05% (something to think about: how might LOW shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that Lowe’s Companies Inc paid investors a total of $18.78/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 4.2/share, we calculate that LOW has a current yield of approximately 2.16%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 4.2 against the original $38.43/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 5.62%.

One more investment quote to leave you with:
“I’d like to live as a poor man with lots of money.” — Pablo Picasso