Compound interest The reason to start saving today
One of the most important dreams of children and young adults is about growing up and start earning so that the amount can be spend as per wish. Majority of the readers might have dreamt about receiving salary for the first time and gifting it to parents. Some of you might have thought about spending one full day in a big shopping mall fulfilling all dreams of dining, playing and watching movies
Have anyone ever thought of saving a portion from the first month itself? Many might not have. The importance of saving can be realized if you look at your parents, how they are working every day and saving a portion of their earnings for sending you school and meeting medical treatments and other exigencies.
Saving habit is one of the most important habits that each child should practice from childhood. Today, banks, post offices and other financial institutions offer special accounts for children to teach them the habit of saving. There are different products like savings bank account, recurring deposits, fixed deposits etc to choose from.
Along with saving, you often hear the terms simple interest and compound interest. Interest is the periodical compensation you earn till the amount is repaid, for parting your amount to somebody for meeting his financial need. The advantage of compounding interest is that you earn interest on both the principal amount and interest accrued.
You have learnt the formula I= PNR and 〖I=P(1+r)〗^n , for simple interest and compound interest respectively. You might have solved many problems using the compounding formula. But, it is possible that you would not have noticed the real power of compounding.
The statement “Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it earns it…he who doesn’t … pays it”, amply reveals the potential of compounding interest. The quote is often attributed to Albert Einstein, who was an expert on the various powers of the universe.
Let us learn about the power of compounding and how the compounding effect helps to accumulate our wealth.
Anton, John and Paul are three friends. All are 25 years old and are getting their first salary today. Their retirement age is 60 years. They have decided that they should have Rupees One Crore each at the time of reaching age 60. They have also identified an account that pays interest at the rate of 8% per annum compounded quarterly for the next 35 years. Since it is compounded quarterly, interest is paid on the accumulated interest also every quarter.
Anton was brilliant in mathematics and has learnt about the effect of compounding and he starts saving today itself by investing every month. John wants to save but he decides to spend whatever he earns till reaching 40 years of age. Paul on the other hand is an easy going person and he decides that savings for retirement need to be started only after reaching fifty.
Amount to be invested to receive Rupees One Crore at the age of sixty.
Starting age

Years (A) till reaching 60 
Months (B) till reaching 60 –Ax12 
Monthly amount (C)to be saved by Anton 
Monthly amount (C )to be saved by John 
Monthly amount ( C ) to be saved by Paul 
25 
35 
420 
Rs.4,387 
—– 
—– 
40 
20 
240 
— 
Rs.16,976 
—– 
50 
10 
120 
— 
—– 
Rs. 54,461 
Total amount deposited P= BxC 
—– 
—– 
Rs. 18,42,540 
Rs. 40,74,240 
Rs.65,35,320 
Amount at the age of 60 Q 
—– 
—– 
Rs. 1,00,00,000 
Rs. 1,00,00,000 
Rs. 1,00,00,000 
Interest earned R (PQ) 
—– 
—– 
Rs.81,57,460 
Rs. 59,25,760 
Rs. 34,64,680 
By saving an amount of Rs. 18,46,540 over a period of 35 years, Anton earns rupees one crore. But due to delay in starting to save, Paul has to deposit 3.54 times more than Anton to earn the same amount. In the case of Anton, the interest earned is 4.42 times the investment where as in the case of Paul, the interest earned is around 50% of his investment. That is the power of compounding.
Now, let us examine how much will be the amount at the age of 60, if Anton , John and Paul starts saving uniform amount of Rs. 5,000 each per month at the ages of 25, 40 and 50 respectively.
Amount received at the age of 60, if the amount saved is Rs. 5,000/ per month.
Starting age

Years (A) till reaching 60 
Months (B) till reaching 60 –Ax12 
Anton 
John 
Paul 
25 
35 
420 
Rs.5,000 
—– 
—– 
40 
20 
240 
— 
Rs.5,000 
—– 
50 
10 
120 
— 
—– 
Rs. 5,000 
Total amount deposited P= BxRs.5,000 
—– 
—– 
Rs. 21,00,000 
Rs. 12,00,000 
Rs.6,00,000 
Amount at the age of 60 Q 
—– 
—– 
Rs. 1,13,96,984 
Rs. 29,45,248 
Rs. 9,18,084 
Interest earned R (PQ) 
—– 
—– 
Rs.92,96,984 
Rs. 17,45,248 
Rs. 3,18,084 
Let us examine the effect of monthly, quarterly, semiannually and annually compounding. We are examining the case of Anton alone.
Impact of Compounding frequency
Starting age

Years (A) till reaching 60 
Months (B) till reaching 60 –Ax12 
Total investment B x Rs. 5000 
Maturity amount for monthly investment of Rs. 5,000/ each at 8% interest with different compounding periods 





Monthly 
Quarterly 
Half Yearly 
Annually 
25 
35 
420 
21,00,000 
1,15,45,875 
1,13,96,984 
1,11,82,328 
1,07,81,765 
35 
25 
300 
15,00,000 
47,86,833 
47,45,793 
46,86,297 
45,74,197 
45 
15 
180 
9,00,000 
17,41,726 
17,33,533 
17,21,594 
16,98,892 
55 
5 
60 
3,00,000 
3,69,834 
3,69,309 
3,68,542 
3,67,070 
Based on the above, examine whether the following statements are true or false.
1.More the period less the amount to be invested to achieve a specific corpus.
2.Lesser the compounding frequency, more the maturity amount.
3.We get better maturity amount , if we save regularly.
4.The impact of return depends on the amount of investment, period of investment, rate of interest and compounding frequency.
5.The best time to start saving is now.
If you agree that all the above statements are true, you have learnt the potential of compounding interest. Go ahead, start saving TODAY.
John CS
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