We spend much of our time learning. We absorb information around us so that we can make better, more informed decisions in the future. Often, we study the past to determine a course of action for the present.

Investors have various strategies to improve decision-making when it comes to buying and selling stock but what if they could travel back in time using an Investment Time Machine? Let’s be honest — that’s probably not going to happen anytime soon. Luckily, Online Trading Academy just unveiled an interactive graphic that shows how some of America’s favorite companies have fared over the years.

Have you ever asked yourself how much money you’d have if you invested in a booming company like Apple or Walmart back in the day? The answer is, quite a bit.

The graphic by OTA shows what would happen if instead of buying a common product like the iPhone or your daily cup of Joe, you invested in the company that produces these items. And it turns out, the returns are significant.


If you opted not to buy the $600 iPhone when it first came out in 2007 and instead put the money you saved towards Apple stock (Aapl) today you’d have more than $2000.


Or, if you made coffee from home instead of stopping by Starbucks (SBUX) on your way to work each morning, you could have put that $520 of annual savings into company stock. Today, you could report earnings of almost $50K if you invested back in the nineties!


Finally, a toaster from Walmart (WMT) in 1972 would have run you $15. If you had put $15 into Walmart stock before the store become the iconic brand that it is, today you’d have $30,000. What a profit!

Check out the interactive graphic for more popular brands and see which companies you would invest in if you could go back in time.