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20 Stocks You Wished You Bought Way Earlier


There are many of us who had the opportunity to make a small investment years ago, but passed on the opportunity. While most new companies go bust while trying to make a go of it, there are a few that hit the ground running and made it to the status of multi-billion dollar producers in the industry. It's not easy to take a chance on a new startup when they've not yet proven themselves. Getting in on the ground floor of a new company is risky, but there is also the potential for substantial monetary rewards and a high return on your initial investment. There are so many different options for investing that choosing the right stock can become a daunting task. Those that are in the high risk category can take your investment value down to zero, but they can also make you rich over time. There are usually ups and downs in the value of the stock, and any investment can be a wild ride. Nonetheless, there are some businesses that have made the people who were willing to take a chance on them much wealthier than they would have otherwise been. If you'd have put a grand down on one of the more successful companies from the 2000s, where would be be financially speaking today? Here are twenty major companies that have done well, and that you probably wish you would have invested in about ten years ago.

Apple (AAPL)

The Apple company is one of those remarkable tech companies that was a gamble for initial investors, that just happened to pay off in aces. The share price ass of August 31, 2017 was set at $19.78. The average annualized return is at 24.32% and as of August of 2017, the going share price was $164.00. The Apple technology company is one of the most well-known consumer brands on the planet. Although there have been ups and downs throughout the past ten years, it has made a 55% gain in the last 12 months. If you had invested $1,000 in the company the last day of August 2017, today, your investment would be worth $8,818.81. Many of the devices that we use for communications and work today are Apple products. Customers of the company are constantly on the lookout for new models and upgrades for products and services. This keeps the corporation on top and consistently moving ahead.

Alphabet (GOOGL)

Alphabet is another company that would have been an excellent investment ten years ago. On August 31 of 2007, the share price was $257.37. As of Augusts 31, 2017 the share price has increased to $939.33. The average annualized return on investments is 11.39%. Not that many people are aware of the fact that Alphabet is the name of the holding company for the massively successful tech company Google. Alphabet has branched out into multiple types of businesses including entertainment services, office productivity, cellular phones, virtual assistants and other business products. The past year has seen tremendous growth in the company with a quarterly revenue of $26 billion, reflecting in an increase of 21% over the prior 12 month period and a 150 point surge in stocks over the period in response. An investment of $1000 in the company would show a ROI of $2,940.78 if purchased on August 31 of 2007.

Netflix (NFLX)

Netflix has become an international sensation that offers on demand services for a wide variety of television shows, movies and specials. The huge corporation has now expanded with an explosion of growth for its subscription services. You could have purchased stock in the Netflix company for just $2.50 per share on August 31 of 2007. With an average annualized return of 52.90%, the share price climbed to $174.71 within a ten year period of time. This would have been an excellent gamble, because a ten thousand dollar investment at the time would have yielded a healthy return on investment. At the end of the ten years, it would have been worth $69,835.28. There were ups and downs throughout the decade, but overall, the gains were substantially more than the losses. Netflix is currently on the rise again, and although the company is expanding its reach and making new acquisitions and deals, the stock value is moving up.

Coca-Cola (KO)

Coca-Cola is one of the most popular and widely recognized soft drink brands in the world today. They have expanded their product line to accommodate a variety of personal preferences and tastes with original products as well as a variety of different flavors and formulations to please their patrons. Multi-billionaire Warren Buffet saw the wisdom of investing in the Coca-Cola company. While it's not bringing in a high return on investment, Coca-Cola is stable. The share price as of August 31, 2007 was $26.89 and in a decade it has risen to $45.55. The average annualized return is $7.68. The company did lag here and there, as is the nature of stocks, and although its performance against the S&P 500 has sagged at times, it's seen a 12 percent share price gain in the year to year figures. If you had invested $1,000 in the Coca-Cola company, in August of 2017, you would have more than doubled your initial investment and came out on top with a value of $2,095.80.

Walt Disney Co. (DIS)

From the early films such as "Bambi" and other classics that American audiences grew up with, the Walt Disney Company has been one of the most distinguished and highly recognizable names in the entertainment business. The company has consistently improved its goods and services to keep the country and beyond entertained with high quality programming and activities. The Walt Disney Company was another good investment bet. The share price on August 31 of 2007 was $33.60. In a ten year period of time, the share price roses to $101.20 with a 12.59 percent average annualized return. The Disney company evolved into a huge conglomerate that includes the production of movies and television shows, theme parks and major attractions, licensed products and consumer goods and involvement in several aspects of the entertainment industry. The share price saw a lull during the 2016-2017 year, but the long term performance has excelled and risen above peer companies overall. If you had invested $1,000 in the company, the value of your investment over ten years would be $3,273.39

Microsoft (MSFT)

Microsoft is the giant that sprouted wings and took flight. The technology company has transformed the way that we communicate, play games and work. They offer products and services that connect the world via their continually improving computers, programs and electronic equipment that is consistently updated and improved. Microsoft is recognized world wide for its high quality goods and services.

Although the company saw its biggest growth spurt in the 1990s, it has moderated from a millionaire-making company for investors to a stable investment bet. Within a ten year period from 2007 to 2017, the share price for Microsoft went from $28.73 to $74.77. It showed an average annualized return of 11.21 percent. Since 2013, it has not failed to outpace the S&P 500. If you had invested $1000 in Microsoft in August of 2007, in 2017 you would have a value of $2,893.60.

Nike (NKE)

You see the faces of some of the greatest athletes in the country representing the Nike brand of footwear, clothing and equipment lines. The Nike shoe company is another company that would have been a good choice for investment. in 2007, they adjusted close share price was $12.20. In a decade's time, the share price rose to $52.81 with the average annualized return of 15.13 percent. The company is known for its innovations in creating high quality running and athletic shoes in addition to other licensed sportswear. The expansion of the company has extended to sports equipment and a variety of supplies as well. Although the stock took a hard hit in 2016, and it trailed behind the S&P 500 by about six percent in early 2017, Nike would have still been a good investment option in 2007. If you had invested $1,000 in the company in 2007, ten years later, the value of the investment would be $4,091.52.

Pfizer (PFE)

While some pharmaceuticals have proven to be a bad risk, others have done well. The well-known Pfizer company turned out to be a company that yielded safe and moderate returns on investment. The share price in August of 2007 was $24.84. Within a decade, the share price rose to $33.92 with an average annualized return of 5.89 percent. Although it has had its share up ups and downs, lags, and is currently flat, the major biopharmaceutical company is known for the consistent, although slow growth in its stock. If you had invested $1,000 in Pfizer in 2007, ten years later, the value of your investment would be $1,772.35.

Amazon (AMZN)

Amazon was a long shot when it was first developed on somewhat of a shoestring. Countless investors had the opportunity too get in on the ground floor of the company, but considered it to be too risky, and passed on the offer. The share price in 2007 was $79.91. Within a decade, it skyrocketed to $980.60 with an average annualized return of 28.47 percent. Amazon is constantly growing, expanding and evolving. The company adds new services and products on a consistent basis. At its peak, the share price has reached a high of over $1,000. If you had invested $1,000 in Amazon in August of 2007, in August of 2017, your investment would be worth $12,246.65.

Walmart (WMT)

The Walmart corporation is the biggest retailer in the world, when it comes to brick and mortar institutions. When it became obvious that the online competition which includes Amazon and others were taking a chunk of the pie, the company added an online component for their customers. The share price in August of 2007 was $43.63. By August of 2017, the share price had risen to $78.07, with an average annualized return of 8 percent. If you had invested $1000 in Walmart stock, then the value ten years later would be $2,158.92.

Tesla (TSLA)

You can ask Elon Musk about the Tesla company and he'll let you know that it's a good investment. It was his idea to launch one of the vehicles into space in the most recent shuttle, rocketing its way to Mars. Tesla is the manufacturer of electronic vehicles and has become a leader in the industry. Tesla is considered to be perhaps the most controversial company in the public market. They hit the green niche in the auto industry at the perfect time, when the world is attempting to make the transition from fossil fuels to a cleaner mode of power. Investors who made their investments in 2013 are enjoying a return on investment that surpasses six hundred percent. If you had invested $1,000 in the company in the summer of 2010, your return on investment today would be $16,967.37. That's a hefty ROI for just a seven year period of time. One of the reasons why Tesla was such a good gamble to take is that their marketing is low cost. They don't spend a ton on marketing, their customers are loyal and faith in the company is high. They're blowing the competition out of the water with a lead of twelve full points over comparable companies.

Bitcoin (Not technically a stock)

Bitcoin has taken its share of abuse since its inception, but it's an asset that has proven itself as worthy a gamble as gold or other precious metals. Would you believe that within the last 12 month period, the price of this valuable asset has increased over nine hundred percent? The legitimacy of Bitcoin has been questioned in the past and crypto-currency is still getting a bum rap in some circles. With a 900 percent increase in price, we'd have to say that Bitcoin is making a show and it certainly is gaining in reputation as well as legitimacy. The growth is unquestionable.

Starbucks (SBUX)

When the world famous coffee company Starbucks first opened up its doors in Seattle, Washington, it was a coffee shop like many others. There wasn't anything particularly special about it until the unique flavor began to catch on with customers. Starbucks quickly expanded the small coffee business, launching a new lifestyle that started in the Pacific Northwest and is now enjoyed throughout the globe. The company had an adjusted close share price of $12.31 in 2007. In a ten year period of time, the share price rose to $54.86 with an average annualized return of 15.66 percent. Although Starbucks hit some hard financial times in 2016 which ran through 2017, and the stock is currently flat, you would not have lost your hat if you'd invested your money in the company in 2007. In fact if you would have put $1,000 into it in 2007, within the decade, the value of this investment would be $4,283.83.

Berkshire Hathaway stock

Omaha, Nebraska is known as the home of one of the biggest conglomerates in the world. In fact, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. is the seventh largest in public trading today. This massive company is the full owner of Helzberg Diamonds, Pampered Chef, Fruit of the Loom, Dairy Queen, Geico, Lubrizol, BNSF Railway, and is the partial owner of a variety of other well known brands, including the Coca-Cola company, Kraft Heinz, American Express, Wells Fargo, United Airlines, Delta Airlines, and many more. It also holds interest in a variety of manufacturing companies, gas and electric utilities, jewelers and confection related product manufacturers.

Berkshire Hathaway has offered class A shares since 1964. This is a company that Warren Buffet kept an eye on and eventually took over. The share price when the magnate made his move was just $12.37. You could have purchased 80 shares for a $1,000 investment in the company. As of 2017, Berkshire Hathaway stock was valued at a share price of $294,000. With a gain of 1,972,595 percent, your 1,000 investment in Berkshire Hathaway would now be worth 23.7 million dollars.

FedEx (FDX)

FedEx is the delivery company that rivals the United States Postal Service as well as United Parcel Service. One of the best things that happened for the FedEx company was the growth and success of the online giant Amazon. The business that FedEx gets from them keeps the trucks on the road and the revenues rolling in. The share price in 2007 for FedEx was $109.68. A decade later, the share price had risen to $214.38. The average annualized return for the company is 7.32 percent. They've had their ups and downs over the past ten years, but within the last 12 months, FedEx has seen a rises in stocks of around 50 points. If you invested a thousand dollars in FedEx in 2007, by 2017, your stock would be valued at $2,026.78.

McDonald’s (MCD)

McDonald's is the famous fast food chain of restaurants that offers the convenience of drive through dining. The corporation faces tough competition from other well-known fast food chains, so it must continually reinvent itself by coming up with new gimmicks and products that meet with the ever changing whims of its customer base. There are constant amendments and additions to the already large menu, which has helped to put them at the top of the fast food industry.

Share prices for 2007 were $49.25. By 2017, these had more than tripled to a price of $159.97. The average annualized return for McDonald's investors is 14.39 percent. If you had invested $1,000 in McDonald's stock in 2007, within a decade, your stock would be worth $3,836.02.

Yahoo (YHOO)

Yahoo had its heyday in the late 1990s through the 2000s period. The company made several acquisitions that propelled it to success. Although it has had its share of ups and downs throughout the last few decades, Yahoo has made some amazing profits. In 1996, the share price was $13.00. It has continued to climb and the annualized return on the investment is at 17.34 percent. If you had invested in Yahoo stock in April of 1996, the value of your stocks would be $23,854.00. Not too bad for a company that is currently in the mully-grubs.

Facebook (FB)

Zuckerman had a tough time getting Facebook off the ground, but enough investors saw the potential and gave it a fighting chance. Facebook is currently a leader in the social media arena, and it offers a variety of services for subscribers and businesses wishing to advertise on the highly prolific network. Who would have thought that the social media sensation would become so widely used throughout the world? On May 12 or 2012, Facebook shares were going for $38 each. Now, less than six years later, the annualized return for the company is at 43.64 percent. If you had invested a thousand dollars into the company in 2012, your investment would now be valued at $3,888.


Most of us remember the new and innovative products that the IBM company produced. They were state of the art when they first came out, and IBM helped to revolutionize the workplace. We still see some of the old dinosaurs in storage lockers and in the back work areas of offices. The company has kept up with the times offering yet more innovations in the tech industry, but has largely been overshadowed by some of the more prolific companies. IBM was around in the early 1960s and it's still alive and well today. The technology and equipment giant initial stock price in January of 1962 was valued at $2.15 per share. The annualized return is at 7.78 percent. If you invested a thousand bucks into IBM stock in 1962, you were smart. The current value of your stock would be $56,654.

Mylan NV (MYL)

Mylan is a pharmaceutical company that has been at the center of recent controversy. This company is responsible for the manufacture of the EpiPen that is used to treat allergic reactions. Ridiculously steep price hikes drew the attention of the government and special sessions were called to question the ethics of a company that would raise the prices to levels that are not affordable for many users that depend on the medication to save their lives in emergency situations. The public was so strongly outraged by the unfair pricing that the stock values began to drop, losing seventeen percent from 2016 through 2017. Still, investors were not hurt by the declines in a ten year investment scenario. In August of 2007, the share price was $15.10. By August of 2017, the share price was $31.48 with an average annualized return at 7.65 percent. If you invested a thousand dollars into Mylan NV, in 2007 the value of the stock ten years later would be $2,089.97, so your money would have doubled. It's difficult to tell what the value of the stock would have been had it not been for the price inflation and the public outcry over the incident.

Garrett Parker

Written by Garrett Parker

Garrett by trade is a personal finance freelance writer and journalist. With over 10 years experience he's covered businesses, CEOs, and investments. However he does like to take on other topics involving some of his personal interests like automobiles, future technologies, and anything else that could change the world.

Read more posts by Garrett Parker

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