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Compound Return

Compound Return

What is the Compound Return?

The compound return is the rate of return, normally communicated as a percentage, that addresses the cumulative effect that a series of gains or losses has on an original amount of capital throughout some undefined time frame. Compound returns are generally communicated in annual terms, meaning that the percentage number that is reported addresses the annualized rate at which capital has compounded after some time.

At the point when communicated in annual terms, a compound return can be alluded to as a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR).

On the off chance that a investment fund claims to have created a 10% annual compound return throughout the course of recent years, this means that toward the finish of its fifth year, the fund's capital has developed to a size equivalent to what it would be in the event that the funds close by toward the beginning of every year had earned precisely 10% before every year's over.

Figuring out Compound Return

Compound return is seen as a considerably more accurate measure of performance of an investment's return over the long run than the average return. This is on the grounds that the average annual return doesn't produce compounding into results, which brings about a gross error of a financial backer's genuine returns. Average returns either misjudge or underrate growth or decline in returns. In effect, compound returns guarantee that volatility, which can expand or empty returns, is represented in computations.

Illustration of Compound Return

For instance, assume you began with an initial investment of $1,000. Assuming you duplicate 1,000 by 1.1 five times, or at least, $1,000 x (1.1)5, you will wind up with about $1,611. If an investment of $1,000 ended up being worth $1,611 toward the finish of five years, the investment could be said to have generated a 10% annual compound return over that five-year period.

Here is the math:

  • Year 1: $1,000 x 10% = $1,100
  • Year 2: $1,100 x 10% = $1,210
  • Year 3: $1,210 x 10% = $1,331
  • Year 4: $1,331 x 10% = $1,464.10
  • Year 5: $1,464 x 10% = $1,610.51

In any case, this doesn't mean that the investment really valued by 10% during every one of the five years. Any pattern of growth that prompted a last value of $1,611 following five years would liken to a 10% annualized return. Assume the investment didn't earn anything for the initial four years, and afterward earned $611 in its last year (a 61.1% return for the year). This would in any case liken to a 10% annual compound return over the five-year measurement period, since the last amount is as yet equivalent to what the $1,000 would have developed to in the event that it had valued by a consistent 10% every year.

Assuming returns for the investment portrayed in the model above were calculated utilizing average returns, then, at that point, it would wind up with an erroneous percentage. On the off chance that the investment didn't above earn anything in the initial four years, however earned 61.1% in its fifth year, the average return will be calculated as: (0% + 0% + 0% + 0% + 61.1%)/5 = 12.22%


  • Compound return is the rate of return for capital over a cumulative series of time.
  • Compound returns are a more accurate measure as compared to average returns to compute growth or decline in an investment throughout some undefined time frame.