In this whole time of tumult, I’ve not paid much attention to my IRA accounts. I’m not retiring any time soon (or ever), so I figure I’ll just ride it out.
This week several envelopes arrived in the mail from my investment firms giving my end of year numbers. As you might expect, the number beside my “Value of this account on December 31st 2007” is much higher than the one for 2008.
I didn’t have much of a reaction — none of this money feels very real to me anyway… but the sums were large enough that I went to check a few things online.
As I opened my account, Vanguard was good enough to offer some historical numbers.
|Historic risk/return (1926–2007)|
|Best year||49.2% (1933)|
|Worst year||–38.5% (1931)|
|Years with a loss||22 of 82 (26.8%)|
Worst year, 1931… Great Depression… makes sense…
But what surprised me was the Best Year… Just two years later, things skyrocketed almost 50%…
Some days are cloudy, but eventually the sun returns. You just have to remember it’s always there.