Three shares became a fortune
One woman's purchase of Abbott Labs stock seven decades ago helped turn her into a millionaire.
Grace Groner worked as a secretary at Abbott Laboratories (ABT) for 43 years, and bought three $60 shares of specially issued Abbott stock in 1935.
That must have been a major purchase back then for a young woman fresh out of college. Little did she know at the time that she had just created what would become a fortune.
The Chicago Tribune tells the story of Groner, who never married or had children, and lived in a small one-bedroom house until she died in January at age 100.
Those three Abbott shares split over and over for seven decades, and Groner reinvested the dividends, writes John Keilman of the Tribune. The shares became a cornerstone of an estate that, by the time Groner died, was worth $7 million.
She has left the money to a foundation connected to her alma mater, Lake Forest College. The donation is expected to generate more than $300,000 a year for the school, Keilman reports, and will be used to help students with internships and study-abroad programs.
Groner even left her small house in Lake Forest to the school, and it will become a student residence for scholarship winners.
Abbott helped Groner become a millionaire, but her frugal living certainly had much to do with it also. She bought used clothing, and preferred to walk instead of buy a car, Keilman reports. Her home was rather unspectacular, holding plain pieces of furniture, an old television set and mismatched dishes.
Few people knew about her wealth, and the president of Lake Forest College could only say one thing when informed of her donation: "Oh, my God."
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.
The apparel chain takes a hard hit after blaming the weather for its quarterly sales decline. But cold temperatures don't explain the drop in full-year sales as well.
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
Top Stocks provides analysis about the most noteworthy stocks in the market each day, combining some of the best content from around the MSN Money site and the rest of the Web.
Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.
Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.