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When investors hear that stocks have averaged an annual return of 10.28% since 1926, they may mistakenly believe that stocks will return 10% most years. In reality, stocks have only returned between 8 and 12% in six calendar years since 1926.


S&P 500 Index Annual Total Returns (1926–2023)

Past performance does not guarantee future results. The performance shown above is index performance. Investors cannot directly invest in an index.

Bottom line: The high returns that stocks have delivered come with significant volatility—but this has been worthwhile for long-term investors.

Your financial professional can help you stay focused on your long-term goals when you feel impatient with the stock market.

S&P 500 Index is a market capitalization-weighted price index composed of 500 widely held common stocks. Returns for the S&P 500 Index from 1926 to 1969 are calculated by Ibbotson and are represented by the SBBI US Large Stock Index. Returns from 1970 to 2023 are for the S&P 500 Index. Source: Morningstar. 

Important Risks: Investing involves risk, including the possible loss of principal.


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