The Real value of Money

Let’s assume I work hard and earn $120,000.00 a year, and I want to become so wealthy that I no longer have to work for a living.

I know what to do to become this wealthy; I just don’t know how to do it.

Oh, I know how to start, but finishing the task is where the difficulty arises.

To become financially very wealthy (by most people’s standards) all I have to do is start with a very small amount of money and double it, or increase it by 100% thirty times. (for our purposes, I shall disregard tax consequences, which would be enormous)

OK, you might ask, how small are we talking about? To keep it simple let’s begin with one cent. Yes, that’s what I said, one cent, one little red penny, one 100th part of a dollar. Then let’s double the amount every day for the next month, for thirty days.

One could argue that a single penny is such a pittance; and so it is. And I’m willing to forgive anyone who is sincere in his or her belief that it is impossible to transform one penny into any sort of fortune simply by doubling it. But bear with me a few minutes.

I begin by depositing one cent in my own non-interest bearing account on day one. On the second day I add another penny to the penny I started with, and I have two cents. I add two more pennies to those two on day three and I have four cents, and eight cents on day four. Day five shows sixteen cents in my account, then thirty two, then sixty four, and on the eighth day I have a grand total of $1.28, hardly great wealth yet, but I easily add another $1.28 turning it into $2.56 on day nine. (Write these figures down as you read, if you wish to)

The above does not seem like a lot. But on the tenth day I have accumulated $5.12, and the next day I double that to $10.24. Days twelve, thirteen, and fourteen show the amount in my account to be $20.48, $40.96 and $81.92 consecutively.

On day fifteen I should be able to find another $81.92 to bring my total up to $163.84, and maybe even another equal amount to bring it up to $327.68 on day sixteen and $655.36 on day seventeen. Remember, each day I add the same amount I had the day before, thus doubling that amount.

I’m over halfway there, but I begin to think: this is starting to get a little hairy. I am at day eighteen and with my $120,000.00 annual salary it is really going to cut into my standard of living if I start handing $600.00+ to my account every day. I decide to start over and double my money every month instead of every day. So I lay my first month’s penny down and continue making deposits monthly for the next seventeen months as I had done for the past seventeen days.

In my seventeenth month I have $655.36 in my account (the same amount I previously had on my seventeenth day) not very much for a guy making $120,000.00 annually and saving for almost a year and a half. But next month I add another $655.36, making the total in my account $1,310.72. It’s looking better, but hardly the wealth I am shooting for.

Month nineteen sees $2,621.44 in my account, and in month twenty there is $5,242.88. Toward the end of month twenty one I struggle to add the same amount again and bring my account up to $10,485.76.


$10,486.76 is more than I bring home each month. How am I going to deposit that amount again? I guess I could go get a second jobNO! I think I will start over and double my penny every year instead of every month.

The years go slowly by

I am now in my twenty second year without much of raise in paylousy company I work forstill at $120,000.00 a year. And it’s pretty disgusting with that salary I have not saved more than $10,485.76, not even $5,000.00 a year. I had previously saved that much in twenty one months. What’s wrong with me? Oh well, I will go down and deposit another $10,485.76 into my account, doubling it to $20,971.52. Then in the twenty third year I double the amount again and bring my savings up to $41,943.04; better, but not much of a pension. Year twenty four doubles the amount again to $83,886.08, and the following year I really struggle to add that amount again in order to bring it up to $167,772.16.

In year twenty six I have another ut-oh moment: while being paid $120,000.00 a year there is no way I can add $167,000.00+ to my account. (like I said earlier, I know the what, but I don’t know the how) If I could deposit $167,773.16, I would have $335,544.32, then $671,088.64 in the twenty seventh year, and $1,342,177.28 the next year. Yes, in the twenty eighth year there would be well over a million dollars in my account.

In year twenty nine the amount would increase to $2,684,354.56 and then in the thirtieth year, $5,368,709.12. That’s right, I said five million, three hundred sixty eight thousand, seven hundred and nine dollarsand twelve cents.

In reality I would have doubled the money only twenty nine times, because I did no doubling on the first day, month or year. One more year would have made it thirty times and would have brought the amount to over ten million.

And think of this: if I had started with a dollar instead of a penny, and if I had succeeded, I would have in excess of five hundred million dollars. Just move the decimal point in the amount shown above two spaces to the right. The total is $536,870,912.00.

Is it possible to increase your money by 100% annually once you are into the millions? I don’t know? I suppose that it could be done if you have a multi-million dollar salary…or if you invest it wisely. And I hope that this little “tongue in cheek” article inspires a few people to try. Bonne chance!

By the way, I did hear of one person who started with $500.00 and by investing he became one of the wealthiest people in the USA, and is still growing richer. I really don’t know how much interest he earns each year: maybe it is over 100%.