# Harnessing the Power of Compounding Interest for Long-Term Wealth Building

## Long-Term Wealth Building

By kinson chowPublished 9 months ago 5 min read
1
Photo by Jason Dent on Unsplash

If you always procrastinate in managing your finances, inflation, aging population, and the rise of artificial intelligence will pose a great threat to your wealth and life. However, if you take action and learn some correct investment and financial planning methods, you will gradually feel the power of compounding interest, and these threats will not easily affect you because the speed of money making money is much faster than that of humans.

Today, let's experience the amazing power of compounding interest.

Famous American investment professor Malkiel once said that the biggest mistake most people make in their lifetime is not fully utilizing the power of compounding interest, which is considered one of the most important inventions in human history.

In New York City, a wealthy administrative district called Manhattan is also described as the economic and cultural center of the entire United States. However, in May 1626, Dutch colonists only spent \$24 to buy the entire Manhattan from the Native Americans. By the year 2000, the value of Manhattan had reached \$25 trillion. Nowadays, it seems that the Native Americans were simply outsmarted. But from another perspective, if the Native Americans who received the \$24 had known some investment methods that could earn an annualized return of 8%, we can use a calculator to calculate how much \$24 in 1626 would become in 300 years later in 2000. The answer is \$76 trillion, yes, you heard it right, \$76 trillion! Enough to buy 30 Manhattans!

So, what is compounding interest?

In simple terms, it means interest on interest, which means that the interest you earn each year will be added to the principal and earn interest again the next year, and so on, creating a compounding effect. This means that your principal will continue to grow, and the power of compounding interest will become more evident over time. From the formula below, we can see that the factors that affect the size of compounding interest are nothing more than three: principal, time, and rate of return.

Compounding interest formula: Final return = principal × (1+ rate of return) years

It is difficult for us to change the principal factor in the early stage, so while we work hard to accumulate the original principal, time and rate of return become the key factors for increasing our final return.

Time is an essential factor in the power of compounding interest. The longer the time frame, the greater the effect of compounding. For example, if you invest \$10,000 and earn an annual return of 8%, after 10 years, your investment will grow to \$21,589. If you continue to reinvest the interest earned for another 10 years, your investment will grow to \$46,610, which is twice the amount you earned in the first 10 years. If you continue to reinvest for another 10 years, your investment will grow to \$100,626, which is four times the amount you earned in the first 10 years. This example shows that the longer the time, the greater the effect of compounding interest, and the more wealth you can accumulate.

The rate of return is another key factor in the power of compounding interest. The higher the rate of return, the greater the effect of compounding interest. For example, if you invest \$10,000 and earn an annual return of 8%, after 10 years, your investment will grow to \$21,589. However, if you earn an annual return of 10%, your investment will grow to \$25,937, which is \$4,348 more than the 8% return. Over the long-term, this difference can be enormous.

In order to truly harness the power of compounding, it is important to start investing early and consistently. Many people make the mistake of waiting until they have a large sum of money before they start investing, but this is a mistake. Even if you can only invest a small amount each month, the power of compounding can still work in your favor. The key is to start as early as possible and stay invested for the long-term.

Another important factor to consider when investing is asset allocation. This refers to the way you distribute your investments across different asset classes, such as stocks, bonds, and cash. The right asset allocation for you will depend on your age, risk tolerance, and investment goals. Generally speaking, younger investors with a longer time horizon may want to allocate a larger percentage of their portfolio to stocks, which historically have offered higher returns over the long-term but come with higher volatility. Older investors or those with a shorter time horizon may want to allocate a larger percentage of their portfolio to bonds, which tend to be less volatile but offer lower returns.

In addition to asset allocation, diversification is also important when it comes to investing. Diversification means spreading your investments across different types of assets, industries, and geographic regions. This can help to reduce the overall risk of your portfolio. For example, if you only invest in one stock and that company experiences financial difficulties, your entire investment could be at risk. However, if you invest in a diversified portfolio of stocks, bonds, and other assets, the impact of any one investment experiencing difficulty is likely to be smaller.

It is also important to pay attention to fees when investing. Fees can eat into your investment returns over time, so it is important to choose investments with low fees whenever possible. Some investments, such as index funds and ETFs, tend to have lower fees than actively managed funds.

Finally, it is important to have a long-term perspective when investing. Investing is not a get-rich-quick scheme, and trying to time the market or chase after hot stocks is likely to lead to disappointment. Instead, focus on building a well-diversified portfolio of investments that align with your goals and risk tolerance, and stick to your investment plan even during periods of market volatility.

In conclusion, the power of compounding can be a powerful tool when it comes to investing, but it requires discipline and a long-term perspective. By starting early, diversifying your investments, paying attention to fees, and staying invested for the long-term, you can put the power of compounding to work for you and potentially achieve your financial goals. So don't wait, start investing today and begin to reap the rewards of compounding over the long-term.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

goals
1

How does it work?

There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.