Do you want to hear something disgusting? A vintage copy of Super Mario Bros. on the NES has just been auctioned for $ 114,000.
Granted, it’s one of the most influential games ever (it introduces Mario to the world) and the specific specimen was rated 9.4, which means it is in near perfect condition. Oh, and there’s a weird technique on a cardboard hanger that makes it super rare. But still … $ 114,000?
This made me think – how good of an investment it would have been to buy a copy of it Super Mario Bros. and leave it in a safe place for about 20 years? Well, I̵
After some thought, I decided that the best I can compare it to is Apple stock. Cupertino has been a darling of investors for years. Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway owns $ 91.3 billion and accounts for 43% of its portfolio.
Let’s find out which investment would have been better.
I couldn’t find a specific US release date, but Super Mario Bros. was launched on in Japan September 13, 1985 – So I’m going to use that date.
After some digging, I found the rough price range of NES games from a printed edition of Electronic Games Monthly::
Now as Super Mario Bros. was a flagship title, let’s just assume that it was one of the most expensive games on the NES. That said, it would have had retail costs of $ 49.99.
Next? Well, we have to find out how much Apple stock cost on September 13, 1985. What I did:
It closed $ 0.281250 that day, which means that $ 49.99 would leave us 177.74 Apple shares.
Not that bad.
In terms of data, the $ 114,000 copy of Super Mario Bros. sold on July 10, 2020. At the close of trading on the same day, a single Apple share was worth $ 383.679993.
This means that your 177.74 Apple shares were worth it $ 68,196.14 last Friday. Uff.
Yes, the new copy of Super Mario Bros. actual value $ 45,803.86 more than all those sweet, tasty stocks.
But don’t tear up your investment portfolio yet (I know how close you were) as this is a minor mistake for two reasons: first, the rarity of this particular copy of the game, and second, stock splits.
Let’s look at the rarity first.
A little rummage in price charting shows that even an unopened copy of Super Mario Bros. usually only applies to average, $ 298.26.
So yes, if you are thinking of going to your parents’ attic to try to find the beat up copy you used to play with your siblings and to kill, you might be disappointed.
Now for the stock splits.
Basically, this is the case when a company shares its existing shares, so there is more of it. Apple has done this four times since 1985. The long and short means that if you held 177, when Super Mario Bros. was released, you would now actually have 9,912.
So, instead of the $ 68,196.14 we mentioned earlier, you would indeed sit on $ 3,803,036.09 *.
Which – if you’re wondering – is a lot more than $ 114,000.
Anyway, let’s summarize and answer the question: what was the better investment in 1985? Super Mario Bros. and Apple share? If you’re a boring stick splitter tracker, Apple is easy.
But if you love to drive freely and gently? With really basic (read: wrong) mathematics? Then Super Mario Bros.
Yes, it’s a shame, but I think what I want to say is this: suck it, Buffett.
* *Note: I haven’t booked any dividends because you literally can’t earn me. Just be happy with what you have.
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Published on July 13, 2020 – 14:42 UTC