3 Investing Moves to Make in 2023 That Can Make You a Fortune

Most Americans are far from where they should be when it comes to saving and investing for retirement. That’s terrible, because it can mean you won’t get to retire when you want, and you may end up spending your last decades worried about money.

Act on the following three smart moves, and you may be able to achieve a happier and more financially secure future. Acting on just one can improve your financial health.

Image source: Getty Images.

1. Invest hefty sums regularly

Yes, this may be obvious, but you may take it more to heart if you see how big a difference it can make if you regularly invest big sums:

Growing at 8% for

$10,000 invested annually

$15,000 invested annually

$20,000 invested annually

5 years

$63,359

$95,039

$126,718

10 years

$156,455

$234,683

$312,910

15 years

$293,243

$439,865

$586,486

20 years

$494,229

$741,344

$988,458

25 years

$789,544

$1,184,316

$1,579,088

30 years

$1,223,459

$1,835,189

$2,446,918

35 years

$1,861,021

$2,791,532

$3,722,043

40 years

$2,797,810

$4,196,716

$5,595,621

Data source: Calculations by author.

The word “regularly” is important, too — if you can do so, be sure to add money to your investment accounts every month, quarter, or year. Taking a year off when you’re, say, 40, means whatever sum you would have invested can’t grow for you over 20 or more years. That’s a lot of moola left on the table.

2. Invest effectively

Next, be sure you’re investing effectively. In most situations, the stock market is your best bet for long-term growth, historically outperforming gold, bank accounts, bonds, and real estate, in general. The long-term average growth rate of the stock market per year is close to 10%, but you can’t count on that for the 10, 20, or 30 years in which you invest. So hope for the best, which could be more than 10%, but plan for less than that.

The table below shows what you might amass at different average annual growth rates if you make annual investments of $10,000:

Growing for

Growing at 6%

Growing at 8%

Growing at 10%

10 years

$139,716

$156,455

$175,312

15 years

$246,725

$293,243

$349,497

20 years

$389,927

$494,229

$630,025

25 years

$581,564

$789,544

$1,081,818

30 years

$838,017

$1,223,459

$1,809,434

35 years

$1,181,209

$1,861,021

$2,981,268

40 years

$1,640,477

$2,797,810

$4,868,518

Data source: Calculations by author via Moneychimp.

An easy — and effective! — way to invest in the stock market is via one or more low-fee, broad-market index funds, such as the SPDR S&P 500 ETF, Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF, and Vanguard Total World Stock ETF. Respectively, they’ll have you invested in 80% of the U.S. market, all of the U.S. market, or most of the world’s stock market.

3. Reinvest dividends

Finally, if you’re holding any dividend-paying stocks in your portfolio, you’ll likely see regular infusions of cash appear in it, from those dividends. Don’t cash them out or just leave them there as cash. Reinvest them in more shares of stock. You might wait for sufficient dollars to accumulate, but a few times per year, see if you have enough with which to buy more shares of the stock(s) in which you have the most confidence.

Stock

Average annual gain since 2000, dividends not reinvested

Average annual gain since 2000, dividends reinvested

NextEra Energy

13.9%

16.8%

Nucor

11.8%

14%

Realty Income

10.9%

14.7%

McDonald’s

9.7%

11.5%

Altria

9.2%

16.1%

General Mills

8.6%

10.6%

PepsiCo

8.4%

10%

Chevron

8%

10.3%

SPDR S&P 500 ETF

5.3%

6.3%

Pfizer

4%

6%

Source: theonlineinvestor.com.

These are three powerful wealth-building moves that anyone can make. See if you can act on all three. It might get you to an early retirement, or at least a more secure retirement.

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Selena Maranjian has positions in NextEra Energy and Realty Income. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends NextEra Energy, Pfizer, and Vanguard Index Funds-Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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