Comments, observations and thoughts from two left coast bloggers on applied statistics, higher education and epidemiology. Joseph is a new assistant professor. Mark is a marketing statistician and former math teacher.
The key to compound interest was either:1) high rates of return (~8%) that were only available for a short period (basically, the Baby Boom trying to buy up assets for retirement so too much money was chasing too few investment vehicles2) Shockingly long periods of time. Even this start to look suspect at 2% real rates of return (doubling time = 36 years). Currently, I am in the happy position of having put more money into TIA-CREF than my account is valued at. I understand investment horizons but I also understand "off to a bad start". :-)