TIME IS ARCHIMEDES’S LEVER IN INVESTING. ARCHIMEDES IS often quoted as saying, “Give me a lever long enough and a place to stand, and I can move the earth.” In investing, that lever is time (and the place to stand, of course, is on a firm and realistic investment policy).

Time—the length of time investments will be held, the period over which investment results can be measured and judged—is crucial to any successful investment program because it is the key to getting the right asset mix.

Time transforms investments from least attractive to most attractive—and vice versa—because while the average expected rate of return is not at all affected by time, the range or distribution of actual returns around the expected average is greatly ...

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