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#1
Old 08-17-2011, 04:00 AM
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100 dollars of IBM stock bought in 1957 is worth Y dollars today - Site that solves for Y?

Are there any sites that answers the following type of question:

One hundred dollars of stock in ________(company)________
Bought in ________(year)________
Is worth ______________ dollars today

An example,

Is there a site that solves for 'X' in the statement below?

One hundred dollars of stock in MICROSOFT
Bought in 1983
Is worth X dollars today.

Thanks!
#2
Old 08-17-2011, 07:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarlGauss View Post
Are there any sites that answers the following type of question:

One hundred dollars of stock in ________(company)________
Bought in ________(year)________
Is worth ______________ dollars today

<snip>

Thanks!
Planning a quick trip back in time?
Sorry, can't help you on the OP.
#3
Old 08-17-2011, 07:51 AM
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Not that I've ever seen. The problem is there have been stock splits and you'd have to find a record of all of them. Stock market records older than 30 years tend to require you to look elsewhere than major players like WSJ.com, Marketwatch etc.

I've actually heard the old tale about people discovering grandpa's 1950s IBM stock certificates in the attic and becoming millionaires, so I've actually attempted to look into this myself. I think you can through manual research come at an answer, but any automated site would have to have access to a pretty comprehensive database that, if it exists, is behind a paywall somewhere and probably has expensive licensing fees associated with it.
#4
Old 08-17-2011, 07:54 AM
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IBM has a calculator here, but it only goes back to 1980. In that same web page you will also find a list of all stock splits back to the 1920s that IBM has done, so using that information you could probably manually answer the question.
#5
Old 08-17-2011, 08:16 AM
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You may also want to somehow account for dividends paid over the years.
#6
Old 08-17-2011, 09:55 AM
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The Yahoo! Finance website has historical prices going back to 1962. It even lists dividends paid and stock splits.
#7
Old 08-17-2011, 10:09 AM
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The major finance websites adjust their data for dividends and stock splits. Pay attention to the "adjusted close" price. When looking at Yahoo Finance's historical prices for IBM in 1983, you can see that on Jan 3 IBM was trading at $93. But, adjusted for dividends and splits - $12.52.

With IBM currently trading $173, the ~8 (split adjusted) shares your $100 would have bought you in 1983 would be worth ~$1280 today.

Last edited by Trom; 08-17-2011 at 10:11 AM.
#8
Old 08-17-2011, 10:59 AM
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Professionals use a service called Capital Changes Reporter to keep track of stock splits and the like. IBM was a famously successful company in the 1960s, and it has had many stock splits and stock dividends since 1957; I was going to list them, but there are too many to make it worthwhile for an abstract point.

Capital Changes Reporter doesn't bother with regular old cash dividends, and of course that would also be an important part of your return. If you found the old stock certificate in an attic, you would try to track down those dividends, which for older dividends would be held in your state's abandoned property fund. Those old dividends would not accrue interest. If you had been receiving the dividends all along, you would have reinvested them (unless you spent them) and received a return on the reinvestment; I believe that websites that track this assume you reinvested in the same stock.
#9
Old 08-17-2011, 12:30 PM
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Thanks for all your responses.

I was just curious and thought it might fun (if not interesting) to play around at such a site. I would have also liked to put together, and then parlay, a "miracle portfolio" of investments starting circa 1960 that would be worth billions today, all for an initial investment of, say, $10000.

Thanks again.

Last edited by KarlGauss; 08-17-2011 at 12:30 PM.
#10
Old 08-17-2011, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trom View Post
The major finance websites adjust their data for dividends and stock splits. Pay attention to the "adjusted close" price. When looking at Yahoo Finance's historical prices for IBM in 1983, you can see that on Jan 3 IBM was trading at $93. But, adjusted for dividends and splits - $12.52.

With IBM currently trading $173, the ~8 (split adjusted) shares your $100 would have bought you in 1983 would be worth ~$1280 today.
Minor nit - since the Yahoo data adjusts for both dividends and splits, what it's actually telling you is that the IBM shares would be worth $1280 minus the dividends paid out over the years. You will note that every time it crosses a dividend, the difference between actual close and adjusted close increases by the (split adjusted) dividend amount. If you like, you can check "dividends only" on the Yahoo data, and see the payments. Unfortunately, it doesn't sum them up for you.

Sometimes, when people do this exercise, they tell you what the shares would be worth if you also reinvested all the dividends.

Last edited by yabob; 08-17-2011 at 12:46 PM.
#11
Old 08-17-2011, 01:00 PM
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(deleted)

Last edited by yabob; 08-17-2011 at 01:01 PM.
#12
Old 08-17-2011, 03:46 PM
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A possible, but not recommended way could be to:

1) Sell the stock, and fail to report the sale on your tax return, or report an obviously lowball profit.
2) Wait for the tax fraud indictment.
3) Read the indictment or the conviction judgment to find out how much you didn't report.
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