Micro-cap stock

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Micro-cap stock

Micro-Cap Stock

A stock with a very low amount of market capitalization. In general, a micro-cap company has a market capitalization of less than $250 million, but there is no hard-and-fast rule. Some brokerages or exchanges have slightly different definitions of micro-cap. Some indexes track micro-cap companies. See also: High-cap, Mid-cap, Low-cap.

Micro-cap stock.

A micro-cap stock is one with a smaller market capitalization -- sometimes much smaller -- than stocks described as small-caps. (Market capitalization is figured by multiplying the current market value by the number of outstanding shares.)

The cut-off for deciding that a stock belongs in one category or the other is arbitrary. However, the capitalization thresholds currently being suggested for micro-caps range from $50 million to $150 million.

Micro-caps are not only the smallest of the publicly traded corporations, but they are also the most volatile. That's partly because they often lack the reserves that may allow a larger company to weather rough periods.

And there are generally relatively few shares of a micro-cap company, so a large transaction may affect the stock's price quite a bit. In contrast, a similar transaction might not affect the stock price of a larger company that had many more shares in the market quite as much.

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Investing in micro capitalization stocks may involve greater risk than investing in small, medium and large capitalization stocks, since they can be subject to more abrupt or erratic movements in price.