A decade after Google’s IPO, I revisit one of the worst investment calls of all time, and it was mine: Don’t buy Google. Ten years ago, I called anyone buying into Google’s much hyped IPO a “sucker.” My bottom line, which I helpfully broke out into a separate paragraph titled “My Advice” in my Money magazine article was “stay clear.” Man was I wrong. In fact, few investing calls, since the beginning of time, have been more wrong. Leading economist Irving Fisher calling stocks cheap in 1929. And then there’s me. Google’s shares started trading at $50, adjusted for a 2-for-1 split a few years later. I said they were worth less than half that, around $20. And I was pretty sure they would soon nosedive to that price. They never did. A decade later, Google’s shares now trade for $586. That’s a 1084% return, roughly 10 times what the stock market did at the same time. If you had invested $10,000 in Google GOOG 0.82% then, you would now have $118,400, or $97,000 more than what you would had if you invested the same money in the S&P 500. You’re welcome! So why was I so utterly wrong about Google? Can I learn anything about investing from this call?
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