Long-term investors are familiar with the chart below and the story that goes with it, but for those that are not familiar, I will go into a brief explanation. From the time Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) went public in 1996 to 2006, investors were rewarded with a compound annual gain of 33%. These gains were largely the result of a string of acquisitions and the successful integration of said acquisitions. For the past seven years, the stock has been completely flat, logging a performance similar to the S&P 500. So what happened to the extraordinary growth the company's stock price had been experiencing?
(click to enlarge)
The table below illustrates the difference in effect that acquisitions had over the...
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