The first episode of MarketFoolery was Jan. 5, 2011. What if you'd bought and held the stocks discussed that day? Chris Hill wraps up the year with a few thoughts on investing in both the stock market and your personal well-being.
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This video was recorded on December 31, 2020.
Chris Hill: It's Thursday, December 31st. Welcome to Market Foolery, I'm Chris Hill. Happy New Year's Eve! Hope you're doing all right. I have a few thoughts to round up 2020, including, as Bill Barker referenced on yesterday's show, what happened at Tuesday's episode.
I have a few people to thank, but I want to start by talking about two stocks, Facebook (META -0.10%) and General Motors (GM 3.25%). Why those two, you may ask? Because next week will be Market Foolery's 10th anniversary. This show turns 10 and the first two companies we talked about on the first episode of this podcast, January 5th, 2011, were General Motors and Facebook.
Now, in the case of GM, they had just announced some really good sales numbers and we talked about whether that would translate into a good boost for the stock. Facebook was still a private company, and the latest valuation put their market cap at $50 billion, and we talked about whether the social network was really worth $50 billion. You hear from time-to-time, "Well, if you bought this stock at this point in time, then today you'd have," and I just thought, well, what if someone actually did that? What if someone listened to the first episode of Market Foolery, took $3,000 and decided to split it three ways. Put one third into an S&P 500 index fund, one third into General Motors, one third into Facebook. How is that person doing after 10 years? Now, Facebook was still private, so they would have to wait another year and half for the IPO. But in this scenario, they'd just wait for that and on day one they say, "Great, I'm in on Facebook."
Since January 5th, 2011, here are the numbers: the S&P 500 up 192%. That's good, that's real good, that is an above average decade. General Motors, less good. GM up 9%. I know, up 9% in 10 years, not great. Facebook goes public mid May of 2012 and through today the stock is up 618%, market crushing returns for Facebook. So, over 10 years, the Market Foolery day one portfolio that started with $3,000 in cash, is now worth more than $11,000. I know, it is tempting to look at that portfolio and think, "Boy, if you've just taken the money from General Motors and put it into Facebook, you'd be up so much more." That's not the point. The point is, this person who did this Market Foolery day one portfolio, they're doing great. When it comes to investing, this is what winning looks like. Someone who doesn't invest in individual stocks like you and me, someone who sits back and methodically puts money into an S&P 500 index fund, make no mistake, they're doing really well. $3,000 in an index fund over the past decade now worth more than $8,700, that's really good, particularly when you think about all this sudden downturns the market has had over the past decade.
Staying invested no matter the environment takes discipline, and I applaud that, I celebrate that. But $3,000 in an index fund over the past decade does not get you north of $11,000 today. Yes, I know that GM has not been the most inspiring business over the past decade but hey, look, at least they're still here. Talk to any investor who owns shares of any of the many businesses that went bankrupt in the past 10 years, they will happily trade that stock for shares of General Motors that end up in the plus column, barely in the plus column, I know, but they'll take those GM shares up 9% along with the dividend payments. They will take that trade in a heartbeat. Facebook went public at $38 a share in May of 2012. That stock is now north of $270 a share, but remember, it was pretty rocky early on. Just a few months after it went public, Facebook's stock was below $18, people bailed, people absolutely got in early, saw the drop and bailed. But those who held on, were absolutely rewarded.
Again, I know no one actually did this, but I actually think it's a pretty good illustration of the approach we talk about at The Motley Fool on our podcasts, and to a much greater degree, in our services. This is why we talk about allocation and mindset. This is why we talk about building a portfolio of 15-20 stocks with a long time horizon. This Market Foolery day one portfolio is kind of a microcosm of what a market bidding portfolio looks like. You've got some laggards, you've got some companies that are keeping pace with the market, and you've got some winners. A couple of those winners are up so much, that they make your laggards irrelevant. In the same way that Facebook is up so much, it carries General Motors over the finish line at the end of the decade to make this a market beating portfolio. This is what winning looks like.
Next week, on January 5th, it will be our 10th anniversary. We're closing in on 2,000 episodes, and there is no way it happens without people like Jason Moser, Andy Cross, Ron Gross, Emily Flippen, Bill Mann, Bill Barker, Jim Gillies, Maria Gallagher, Tim Beyers. I don't have time to name all of the analysts who have shared their time and expertise over the years, but I'm so grateful to them for coming on this show. As I say, every year at this time, they're not paid to be here. So, thank you to them. Thank you to Dan Boyd, who has produced this show for so many years. Dan is fantastic. Dan is a first ballot Hall of Famer as a producer, as a colleague, and as someone who just gets stuff done. If you work with people, whatever job you do, you know the people who just get stuff done. You know what I'm talking about.
Finally, thank you for listening. I know some of you started listening in 2011, some of you started listening just this past year. Whenever you started, wherever you are around the world, thank you for making this show part of your investing journey. I never, ever, ever take it for granted that you're listening. We all have different amounts of money, but we all have the same number of hours in the day. That you choose to spend part of your day listening to this show, listening to any of the Motley Fool podcasts so you can invest better, means more than you can imagine.
But, while you're investing your money, don't forget to also invest in your own health. 2020 was a year when health was front and center for all of us because of the pandemic, and all of the ripple effects of the pandemic. I'm 53 years old. Back in October, I had a colonoscopy. I should've had the procedure when I was 50, but I put it off because, well, I'm stupid. It's not that I was afraid of doing it, I just always in the back of my mind just thought, "Well, I can schedule that whenever. I'm basically healthy, I can schedule that whenever." I just didn't make it a priority. Then, Chadwick Boseman died. It probably doesn't say anything great about me as a person that the catalyst for scheduling a colonoscopy was not me prioritizing my health for my sake or the sake of my family, but instead it was the death of someone that I have never met, but that's what did it. I don't know if it was because he was the Black Panther or what, but when Chadwick Boseman died of colon cancer, I thought, "Wow, I got to schedule this and get this done." And I'm fine. I just realized that all of this may have had you thinking, "Is he about to say that he's dying?" I'm good. I got a clean bill of health from my doctor, I'm good. Although, something else happened this past Tuesday.
The reason there was no episode on Tuesday, is because quite simply, I couldn't move. I threw my back out doing nothing, by the way. I'd love to say I was pulling someone out of a burning car. No, I just moved the wrong way and my lower back muscles started to spasm and I could not get off the floor. Again, I'm fine, I had people in my home to help me. I've got a job with healthcare benefits, so I could schedule a televisit with my doctor. I am on the mend. I'm moving a little more gingerly these days, but that's going to get better with time. But Tuesday morning, when I was lying on the floor in more pain than I've had in a long time, I wasn't thinking about anything to do with investing, I wasn't thinking about how my portfolio was doing. 100% of my focus was on how I could get better as quickly as possible.
This is a show about investing in the stock market. That is the purpose of this show, that is the purpose of The Motley Fool, to help you invest better. But while we're doing that, please make sure to also invest in your own physical and mental health along the way, because being physically and mentally healthy, that is also what winning looks like. Normally, I would tell you to be careful when you go out on New Year's Eve because it's the night when the amateur drunks are on the road, but I'm assuming tonight is going to be a little quieter for most of us. Regardless, be careful out there, stay safe. We will be back for better days in 2021.
As always, people in the program have interest in the stocks they talk about, and The Motley Fool may have formal recommendations for or against, so don't buy yourselves stocks based solely on what you hear. That's going to be it for this additional Market Foolery. The show is mixed by Dan Boyd, I'm Chris Hill. Thanks for listening, we'll see you in 2021.