Compound interest, also known as 'interest on interest', is a fundamental financial concept used in the world of investments and savings. It describes the process where interest is calculated on both the original capital (or principal) and on previously earned interest. This principle is powerful and forms the basis for the growth of savings, investments, and pension funds.

The calculation of compound interest takes into account the fact that if you earn interest on your investment, that interest can also earn interest. This reinvesting process can lead to significant growth of your investments over time, especially if the interest is compounded over longer periods.

Here's a basic formula for calculating compound interest:

A = P (1 + r/n) ^ nt

Where:

- A is the future value of the investment/loan, including interest
- P is the principal investment/loan amount
- r is the annual interest rate (decimal)
- n is the number of times interest is compounded per year
- t is the time the money is invested or borrowed for, in years

It's important to note that the more frequently interest is compounded, the greater the amount of compound interest will be. For example, interest compounded monthly will grow faster than interest compounded annually.

Furthermore, time is a critical factor when calculating compound interest. The longer your money can continue to grow, the more you can benefit from the power of compound interest. That's why it's often recommended to start saving or investing as early as possible.

Calculating compound interest can help you gain insight into the potential growth of your investments and is an essential skill for anyone actively managing their finances. Whether you're saving for a short-term purchase or investing for the long term, understanding compound interest can help you achieve your financial goals.

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