Ralph Wanger's Survival Guide to Investing in Small-Cap Stocks

    by Wayne A. Thorp

    Ralph Wanger's Survival Guide To Investing In Small Cap Stocks Splash image

    Ralph Wanger, the founder of Wanger Asset Management and the former manager of the Acorn Fund (now the Columbia Acorn Fund), is a consistent promoter of small-stock investing.

    His investing style of holding small companies with financial strength, entrepreneurial managers, and understandable businesses allowed him to generate annualized returns of 16.3% with the Acorn Fund between 1970 and 2003, while the S&P 500 index gained 12.1% a year over that period.

    Wanger outlined his approach in his 1997 book “A Zebra in Lion Country: Ralph Wanger’s Investment Survival Guide.” This article focuses on AAII’s “revised” Wanger stock screen, which is an adaptation of the principles outlined in Wanger’s book.

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    → Wayne A. Thorp