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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 Warren Buffett investment philosophy calls for a long-term investment horizon, where a ten year holding period, or even longer, would fit right into the strategy. How would such a strategy have worked out for an investment into Verizon Communications Inc (NYSE: VZ)? Today, we examine the outcome of a ten year investment into the stock back in 2014.

Start date: 01/13/2014


End date: 01/11/2024
Start price/share: $47.03
End price/share: $37.90
Starting shares: 212.63
Ending shares: 346.97
Dividends reinvested/share: $24.08
Total return: 31.50%
Average annual return: 2.78%
Starting investment: $10,000.00
Ending investment: $13,154.86

The above analysis shows the ten year investment result worked out as follows, with an annualized rate of return of 2.78%. This would have turned a $10K investment made 10 years ago into $13,154.86 today (as of 01/11/2024). On a total return basis, that’s a result of 31.50% (something to think about: how might VZ shares perform over the next 10 years?). [These numbers were computed with the Dividend Channel DRIP Returns Calculator.]

Notice that Verizon Communications Inc paid investors a total of $24.08/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 2.66/share, we calculate that VZ has a current yield of approximately 7.02%. Another interesting datapoint we can examine is ‘yield on cost’ — in other words, we can express the current annualized dividend of 2.66 against the original $47.03/share purchase price. This works out to a yield on cost of 14.93%.

One more piece of investment wisdom to leave you with:
“I learned early that there is nothing new in Wall Street. There can’t be because speculation is as old as the hills. Whatever happens in the stock market today has happened before and will happen again. I’ve never forgotten that.” — Jesse Livermore