The S&P 500 has gained 10.6% (total return including dividends) on average annually over the last 50 years (since 1970). For the last 10 years, the S&P 500 is up 13.6% on average annually (total returns including dividends). However, if you missed the 10 best percentage gain DAYS in the last 10 years, your average annual return drops to just 9.2%.
Thus, I would bet that over 90% of stock investors earned 9.2% or less. Why? First, it's impossible to time the market. Second, the stock market can be so volatile that incredibly few people can stay invested properly during bad days, weeks, or months. Instead, people sell their stocks and invest in cash or bonds and then miss out on the days with BIG GAINS.
This is why Warrant Buffett is worth over $60 BILLION as he is one of very few people to stay invested during down periods. And you and I are $59.99 billion poorer than he is.
This is another reason why I prefer investing in real estate. First, it takes weeks or months to sell a property giving us more time to think about it. Whereas we can sell our stocks with a push of a button on our phone in milliseconds. Second, this causes real estate to be a much less volatile investment vehicle. Third, it keeps us invested in real estate as all types of investing is about this-TIME IN THE MARKET and not timing the market. Whereas, the stock market can induce us into thinking that we can time the market because we can buy and sell so quickly.