forrestgump-300x169If you watched the popular Forrest Gump movie, you may have noticed that moment when the perplexed young man opened his brokerage statement and noticed that a big chunk of his shrimp operation profits had been invested in (as he said) some kind of fruit company.  He had opened a brokerage statement and comically misinterpreted the iconic Apple computer logo.


The movie was released on July 6, 1994, when Apple Computer stock was trading at 93 cents a share.  Recently, a commentator looked at what Mr. Gump would be worth today if he’d held onto his shares through last February, when the column was written and the stock price had apple-logo_100433916_mclimbed to $128.66 a share.  The stock split 2 for 1 in June 2000 and again in February 2005, and split 7 for 1 in June 2014, so every $1,000 investment would have grown to $136,894—an increase of 13,589%.  A $100,000 investment, which seems more likely (by that point in the movie, Gump had become a millionaire, with his picture on the cover of Fortune) would simply add a couple of zeros to the terminal value.


This may be the most extreme example in history of a single stock rewarding its shareholders over a long holding period.  Does it make you wish you had a working time machine?