Power Of Compound Interest – NOT the 8th Wonder of the world!

We always hear the rosy pictures about the Power Of Compound Interest right? In fact, there are many claim that Albert Einstein reportedly said “Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it earns it. He who doesn’t pay it.” However, there is no proof on this that Albert Einstein said so (as per my knowledge).

Today morning I shared one image in the social media. The idea is simple -Rs.1 doubled each day for the next 30 days will create Rs.53 CRORES!! The image I shared was below one.

Power of Compound Interest

It looks surprising that Rs.1 on the first day will turn Rs.53 Crore on the 30th day right? Hence, with so much curiosity even many started to ask me WHICH SCHEME IT IS!

Such stories often published by sellers to generate their business. But we often miss the realities with this theory.

Power Of Compound Interest – NOT the 8th Wonder of the world!

Why I am saying Power Of Compound Interest is NOT the 8th wonder of the world when the whole world is claiming so?

In the above image, I intentionally not highlighted which is the REAL 8th wonder of the world than the resultant 8th wonder of the world i.e Power Of Compounding.

The real 8th wonder of the world is PATIENCE but not the Power Of Compounding.

Power Of Compounding the 8th wonder of the world

There is no asset or product on this earth which can double your money on each second day. I also know and you all also know it very well. However, to highlight how the compounding works, I intentionally took the shorter period of 30 days.

Now to come into the real world, let us take an example of Bank FDs. Assuming that the current interest rate 7%. Then if you invest your Rs.1 in such FDs, then it approximately takes around 10 years. Hence, if do the same exercise of money double for every next 10 years, then to accumulate Rs.53 Crores from this Rs.1, you have to wait for around TWO HUNDRED AND NINTY YEARS!!!!

Let us increase our risk appetite and consider the return expectation of 10%, then you have to wait for around TWO HUNDRED AND TEN YEARS!!

Hence, as per me, THERE IS NO POWER OF COMPOUNDING if YOU DONT HAVE THE POWER OF PATIENCE inside you. If you really wish to enjoy the power of compounding from the above example of 30days, you noticed that you have to sit CALMLY for almost 95% of the investment period to enjoy the power of compounding in the remaining 5% of last years.

Let me give you one more example where I have written a post “How to create Rs.100 Cr for your child?“. I will share you how the patience works than the returns.

create Rs.100 Cr for your kids

You noticed that there is no power of compounding effect for almost 10 years (I mean unnoticeable). However, you can notice it from 12-15 years onwards.

Same way, I have written one more post considering the EPF example “How to create ONE CRORE Rupees from EPF?“. Let me share the graph of that also here.

How to create Rs.1 Crore using EPF

Here also, for the first few years, there no visibility of power of compounding.

Hence, it is clear that you have to expect the power of compounding only for your long term goals which are more than 5-10+years and to enjoy the power of compounding, you must have the PATIENCE, which as per me is the 8th wonder of the world.

Again, as I shared recently in social media, even though such power of compounding magic looks like simple and easy to apply, the real-life scenario is not like that.

I am trying to quote few personalities views on PATIENCE and importance of that in investing.

During such up and downs, it is our patience that is of utmost importance. Joel Greenblatt once said

“The biggest challenge for investors is patience and that is in short supply. You used to get a quarterly statement and often throw it in the garbage; now you can check your stock price 30 times a minute. There’s a lot more data, a lot more ability to crunch numbers, and compare people. That works against investors, and patience continues to be the hardest challenge. It always was, but now it is even worse.”

When asked once about whether he was worried about a big drop in the value of Berkshire, Munger said…

Zero. This is the third time Warren and I have seen our holdings in Berkshire Hathway go down, top tick to bottom tick, by 50%. I think it’s in the nature of long term shareholding of the normal vicissitudes, of worldly outcomes, of markets that the long-term holder has the quoted value of his stocks go down by say 50%. In fact you can argue that if you’re not willing to react with equanimity to a market price decline of 50% two or three times a century you’re not fit to be a common shareholder and you deserve the mediocre result you’re going to get compared to the people who do have the temperament, who can be more philosophical about these market fluctuations.

Warren Buffett has also stressed repeatedly on the importance of patience…

The stock market is designed to transfer money from the active to the patient.

Conclusion:-To enjoy the COMPOUNDING effect one must have a great skill of PATIENCE. Otherwise, you never enjoy it. Hence, rather than the goal of enjoying the dreamy compounding effect, the path of the patience is very much important. Give the equal (in fact more) importance to the process than the goal.

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10 Responses

  1. Hi Basu,

    I just landed on your page while searching for opinions on various Term insurance plans but later realized that your website a goldmine. The more you dig the more wealth you unearth, so much so that I have invested a complete day in going through your posts on wide array of topics. Kudos to you for creating awareness among people by providing free guidance!!

    I have two questions regarding Term Insurance:

    Q1) You’ve mentioned that the sum insured should be 15-20 times of one’s annual gross salary.
    So assuming my annual gross salary as 25 Lacs, the sum insured should be 25×20 = 5 Cr.

    Please consider this as my ignorance but I’d like to check with you if insurance companies really honor (i.e. pay) such high claims?

    I read somewhere that it is advisable to go for 1Cr sum insured as the chances of claim getting paid are high. This is also inline to your opinion in one of the Q&A regarding LIC, where you mentioned that their CSR is low because they don’t process higher claims.

    Q2) Even though you’ve suggested to have the term insurance cover until 60 years (or until the time I plan to continue working), I was planning to have the cover for 75 years. My reasoning is that if something unfortunate happens within 75 years, my family will have sufficient corpus to live their life comfortably. Please share your view on this line of thought.

    Kindly consider me a novice investor who has just started setting financial goals after reading your blogs.

    Thanks & regards,

    1. Dear Yash,
      Thanks for your kind words.
      1) Yes, if the policy is issued, you are paying the premium regularly and there is no hiding from your end, then NONE can reject your claim on the grounds that it is high value policy.
      2) You will retire from your working life only when you are financially independent or no one financially dependent on you. In such a situation, Life Insurance is WASTE.

  2. “It looks surprising that Rs.1 on the first day will turn Rs.53 Crore on the 30th day right? Hence, with so much curiosity even many started to ask me WHICH SCHEME IT IS!”


  3. I’ve been following your blogs for quite some time and it has always been good on info, content and spirit. Kudos to that.

    Today I was shocked to see some adult vulgar ad’s in your blog page. I sincerely request you to kindly take additional precaution in allowing the kind of ads in your blogs.

    One of your followers.

    1. Dear Sabharish,
      Thanks for your appreciation. Regarding the ads, Google show those ads as per the IP address search history from where you are accessing my blog. Which is not under my control. However, I still look into this aspect and adopt the changes you suggested. Thanks once again.

  4. I am highly impressed by your presentation which makes it crystal clear that winner in investment is one who has the rare asset of patience which is really really 8th wonder of the world. I am going to share the contents of your article in my interaction with my social circle groups to make them aware about this vital factor in investment

  5. Hi sir, excellent article. We as a investor always think of how much to invest and where to invest but never thinks about how long we should wait. Explanation with examples and graphs made us to understand easily when compounding actually takes place.

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