A Note on Apple Stock

I’m doing some math this morning and I thought I’d share an old image.

In January 1997, in Apple’s darkest days, I purchased 50 shares of Apple stock for $16.75 per share.

Back in those days, you bought actual stock certificates and I kept mine in a safe at home. Over the years, I bought and sold more Apple stock using a brokerage account. Meanwhile, these shares snug in the safe, began to grow. Not only did they grow in market value as Apple rebounded and became the major technology player it is today, but there were three stock splits, 2:1, 2:1, and 7:1 over the years.

Apple Stock Certificate
Back in 1997, Apple stock looked like this.

I transferred the stock certificate and its offspring to a brokerage account before the 7:1 split, so it would be more liquid. I sold it off in bits and pieces over the years to help finance various other investments like my first helicopter and a small apartment building I used to own. Because of the splits, there were always shares to sell. In 2013 and 2014, these shares were instrumental in helping finance my crazy divorce and build my new home.

I still have some of those original shares. If you do the math — which I did this morning — you’ll discover that the shares I have left have a cost basis of about 60¢ per share. This morning, Apple opened at $114.57 per share. If I still had all the shares from this original investment (which, sadly, I do not), it would be worth $160,398 — all from a $837 investment by someone with faith in a failing company.

7 thoughts on “A Note on Apple Stock

  1. Capitalism is a bit like poker. We sometimes bluff and win, usually we fold or get wiped, without knowing why.
    If bets were certainties we would all be gamblers.
    The only reliable money I have ever received has been from darned hard work.

    • Working hard and smart is the way to get ahead. I invested in Apple in the days when everyone thought it would soon go bankrupt Then Steve Jobs came back and things changed. Lucky? I think so! For all of us!

  2. I take your point but I know nothing about ‘investment strategy’. My broker claims to be a genius but his hit rate is barely above trend. With interest rates as low as they now are, that is not much better than chance. He reminds me about his good advice but he has amnesia about his losses. He also charges me a fee.
    Steve Jobs was around for many years, but if you bought in really early he would have cost you money. You invested at the right time and did well. He also went for cheap labour in China and exported hundreds of thousands of electronics jobs, so that we in the west now have doubts about who is copying our photos or using our cameras while we sleep.
    Also, didn’t Steve deny his daughter was his own, despite the DNA proof?
    I want to back the smart guy/gal with some semblance of morality.

    • I don’t believe any brokers are any good. That’s why I do my own investing. Except my retirement funds, which are all managed. That’s a different ball game, though.

      Steve Jobs was a complex man. He did deny his daughter was his — at first. Before the end, he embraced her.

      As for cheap Chinese labor, Apple is just one of TOO MANY company’s sending manufacturing abroad. We’re to blame — we want cheap goods and they want profits. One day the current system will break but I don’t expect it to happen in my lifetime.

      And I’m not worried about who is looking at my photos. They’re pretty tame. ;-)

  3. All true.
    Just wondered if you could re-open your ‘comments’ on the Democrat Dinner. I have a few comments and so many questions. Here in the UK we follow your politics with a mixture of interest and fear.

    • I’d really rather not. I know from experience that it’ll attract all kinds of trolls. I just don’t want to deal with it. But there’s a chance I’ll write about politics again within the next few days. I might try comments on the next post. Sorry.

    • Copy that, Mike Lima.
      Your airspace.
      But I’ll be awake at 02.00 GMT listening to the first debate on the World Service.

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