Remember your mid-twenties when retirement seemed like a lifetime away, and living paycheck to paycheck was not only the norm, but your reality. ‘If only I knew then what I know now’ can be heard echoing throughout offices in banks around the country. So we’re here to heed that warning and help you understand the magic of compound interest in long-term savings, before it’s too late.
Most financial professionals want to get across the importance that saving early is the key to long-term financial success. When you start saving early, your money has more time to grow due to interest, but what the public is often misinformed about is the power of compound interest. Compound interest allows for your savings to grow beyond the amount originally set aside - the principal amount - to have exponential growth period over period.
What exactly is compound interest? Compound Interest is essentially interest earned on interest. It is the result of reinvesting interest, rather than paying it out, so that interest in the next period is then earned on the principal sum plus previously the accumulated interest.
This week we conducted a number of 401(k) participant education meetings. Here is our favorite chart illustrating the importance of savings and compound interest.