What is Market Capitalisation?

Authored by
Team Espresso
November 11 2022
4 min read

The total rupee market value of a company's outstanding shares of stock is referred to as the company's market capitalisation or market cap. This number determines the size of a company. Market capitalisation is used in acquisitions to assess whether a takeover candidate offers a good value to the acquirer. 

Market capitalisation extrapolates what the market believes a publicly listed company is worth. Thus, market capitalisation is a quick and simple way to calculate the company's value. The price of the shares is multiplied by the number of available shares, that is, issued and subscribed to, to arrive at the market capitalisation.

The price of the shares in the market is determined by the supply and demand for the same. The price will rise if there is significant demand for the shares due to various advantageous reasons. Sellers of the stock lower its price if the company's future growth outlook is poor. The market capitalisation metric estimates the company's value in real time. 

Misconceptions about market cap

Market capitalisation does not represent a firm's equity value, even though it is used to define a company. That is possible by carefully examining a company's fundamentals. This is because it may not accurately represent the value of each component of the company. The market overvalues or undervalues the shares. Therefore, the market price represents what the market is ready to spend on its shares.

Market capitalisation does not determine how much a firm would cost to be bought in a merger transaction, despite measuring the price of purchasing all of its shares. 

Importance of market cap

After having understood what is market capitalisation, let’s now look at its importance. Market capitalisation is crucial for various reasons. It enables potential investors to comprehend the genuine worth of a business and how big each one stands compared to others. Because it indicates what the market is prepared to pay for a company’s shares, it aids investors in predicting the future success of a company's stock. Thus, investors can better choose the kind of stocks they want in their portfolios per their investment plans. Due to how different changes in the economy impact them, large-cap, mid-cap, and small-cap stocks all have the potential to outperform the market over an extended period. For investors, it is best to maintain a broad portfolio made up of a well-balanced mixture of these three kinds of stocks. 

Types of companies based on market cap

The stock market generally divides stocks into various categories based on market capitalisation. Enterprises are divided into large, mid, and small-cap companies. 

Large-cap companies:

These businesses have a market capitalisation of at least Rs 20,000 crore. Examples include Reliance Industries Ltd, HDFC Ltd, and Infosys Ltd, among others.

Mid-cap companies:

These businesses have market capitalisations of approximately Rs 5,000 crore to Rs 20,000 crore. The majority of mid-cap stocks are growth-oriented. This makes their shares more volatile than large-cap shares.

Small-cap companies:

These are businesses with a market capitalisation of less than Rs 5,000 crore. 

Micro-cap companies:

These are relatively new penny stocks. The growth and decline prospects for micro-cap enterprises are comparable. As a result, they demand extensive research before investment. 

The classification of a firm and its real market cap can help investors make wise investment choices. Large-cap firms are typically thought of as lower-risk investments than small-cap companies. Thus, for cautious investors who want to stay involved in the market for sustained returns over the long term, large-cap stocks are the best choice. Small-cap stocks are better suited for aggressive investors seeking quick gains with a moderate risk taste. Additionally, small-cap firms have greater growth potential than their bigger counterparts. Thus, they are more likely to offer investors prospects for financial gains. 


An investor can find market capitalisation to be a useful tool when analysing potential investments and keeping an eye on equities, . 


Q. What can you infer from a large market capitalisation?

A high market capitalisation indicates that the company is well established in the industry. Although larger businesses have less room for expansion than start-ups, they get finance more easily, generate a steadier flow of income, and benefit from their reputation. Despite being true for all businesses, those with larger market caps tend to be less risky than the smaller ones.

Q. Does stock price get affected by market capitalisation?

Stock price and the number of shares issued are used to compute market capitalisation. Thus, market capitalisation does not affect the stock price. Analysts monitor market capitalisation to identify companies that are overpriced or undervalued. According to this viewpoint, the market cap can influence an investor's decision to purchase or sell shares based on how valuable a firm is in its sector. However, the market-determined fair value of a share, not a company's market capitalisation, determines the stock price of a share.  

Q. Is a high market capitalisation beneficial?

Having a huge market capitalisation has both, benefits and limitations. Larger businesses can obtain better funding from banks at better rates of interest. Additionally, these businesses gain from size-related competitive advantages like economies of scale and widespread brand recognition. On the other side, huge businesses have fewer options to expand further, which causes their growth rates to slow down over time. 


Any individual or business that owns stock in a company is a shareholder.


An evaluation of a company's gross working capital provides information about the expected cash flow that owners will have at their disposal.