US Smaller Companies Equity Fund

Seeks capital appreciation using both value and growth approaches.

ISIN LU0929966207 Bloomberg TRPUSCQ:LX

3YR Return Annualised
(View Total Returns)

Total Assets


1YR Return
(View Total Returns)

Manager Tenure


Information Ratio
(5 Years)

Tracking Error
(5 Years)


Inception Date 08-May-2013

Performance figures calculated in USD

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31-Jan-2020 - Curt Organt, Portfolio Manager ,
We seek to capitalise on opportunities across the broad range of the small- and mid-cap U.S. equity market. Overall, we remain modestly overweight high-quality companies that compound their earnings. We also look for select investments in “deeper-value” opportunities – those stocks that we believe are significantly undervalued – and hold a number of income-oriented dividend growth companies.
Curt J. Organt, CFA
Curt J. Organt, CFA, Portfolio Manager

Curt Organt is the portfolio manager of the US Smaller Companies Equity Strategy and an associate portfolio manager of the US Small-Cap Core Equity Strategy in the U.S. Equity Division. Curt is a vice president and an Investment Advisory Committee member of the US Small-Cap Core Equity, US Diversified Small-Cap Value Equity, and US Small-Cap Growth Equity Strategies. He also is a vice president of T. Rowe Price Group, Inc.



Investment Objective

To increase the value of its shares, over the long term, through growth in the value of its investments. The fund invests mainly in a widely diversified portfolio of stocks from smaller capitalization companies in the United States.

Investment Approach

  • Focus on companies within the market cap range of the Russell 2500 Index at time of purchase.
  • Assess valuation using relevant sector/industry metrics — absolute and relative price to earnings, price to cash flow, and price to assets.
  • Integrate fundamental research by a dedicated Small-Cap research team to discover underfollowed companies possessing clear business plans, financial flexibility, and proven management teams.
  • Identification of a “value creation” catalyst is key.
  • Broadly diversify holdings to manage portfolio risk profile.
  • Employ a low turnover and patient trading strategy to promote full value realization.

Portfolio Construction

  • 200-250 securities
  • Position sizes typically range from 0.15% to 2.50%
  • Primary sector weights generally vary from 0.5X to 2.0X the Russell 2500 Index weights

Performance (Class Q)

Annualised Performance

  1 YR 3 YR
5 YR
Since Inception
Since Manager Inception
Fund % 13.72% 13.15% 14.48% 12.90% 14.51%
Indicative Benchmark % 1.75% 3.98% 8.47% 7.99% 2.10%
Excess Return % 11.97% 9.17% 6.01% 4.91% 12.41%

Inception Date 08-May-2013

Manager Inception Date 31-Mar-2019

Indicative Benchmark: Russell 2500 Net 30% Index

Data as of  30-Sep-2020

Performance figures calculated in USD

  1 YR 3 YR
5 YR
Since Inception
Fund % 13.72% 13.15% 14.48% 12.90%
Indicative Benchmark % 1.75% 3.98% 8.47% 7.99%
Excess Return % 11.97% 9.17% 6.01% 4.91%

Inception Date 08-May-2013

Indicative Benchmark: Russell 2500 Net 30% Index

Data as of  30-Sep-2020

Performance figures calculated in USD

Recent Performance

  Month to DateData as of 23-Oct-2020 Quarter to DateData as of 23-Oct-2020 Year to DateData as of 23-Oct-2020 1 MonthData as of 30-Sep-2020 3 MonthsData as of 30-Sep-2020
Fund % 7.13% 7.13% 13.76% -0.85% 9.12%
Indicative Benchmark % 8.07% 8.07% 1.44% -2.63% 5.78%
Excess Return % -0.94% -0.94% 12.32% 1.78% 3.34%

Inception Date 08-May-2013

Indicative Benchmark: Russell 2500 Net 30% Index

Indicative Benchmark: Russell 2500 Net 30% Index

Performance figures calculated in USD

Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance.  Source for fund performance: T. Rowe Price. Fund performance is calculated using the official NAV with dividends reinvested, if any. The value of an investment and any income from it can go down as well as up. Investors may get back less than the amount invested. It will be affected by changes in the exchange rate between the base currency of the fund and the subscription currency, if different. Sales charges (up to a maximum of 5% for the A Class), taxes and other locally applied costs have not been deducted and if applicable, they will reduce the performance figures. 

Where the base currency of the fund differs from the share class currency, exchange rate movements may affect returns.

Index returns shown with reinvestment of dividends after the deduction of withholding taxes. 

Effective 1 June 2019, the "net" version of the indicative benchmark replaced the "gross" version of the indicative benchmark. The "net" version of the indicative benchmark assumes the reinvestment of dividends after the deduction of withholding taxes applicable to the country where the dividend is paid; as such, the returns of the new benchmark are more representative of the returns experienced by investors in foreign issuers. Historical benchmark performance has been restated accordingly.

30-Sep-2020 - Curt Organt, Portfolio Manager ,
In September, U.S. equities endured their first month of losses since March as the continued gridlock in Washington over another potential round of stimulus and the controversy over replacing Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg weighed on the market. News on potential coronavirus vaccines and fears over a second wave of infections in Europe also drove sentiment. Within the portfolio, materials contributed the most to relative results due to stock selection. Packaging company Avery Dennison and construction materials producer Vulcan Materials both executed well through coronavirus-driven weakness. Stock selection in health care also added value. Quidel, a manufacturer of diagnostics health care products and rapid diagnostic testing products, continued to benefit from strong demand for its testing kits for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, although a new competitive threat from Abbot set shares back briefly. Conversely, our stock picks in financials hurt, although this was partially offset by a favourable underweight position in the sector. Shares of community bank South State Corporation and high-quality commercial bank Pacific Premier pulled back with the broader market towards the end of the month, but we remain positive about both companies.


Largest Holding CoStar Group 2.02% Was (30-Jun-2020) 2.05%
Other View Full Holdings Quarterly data as of 30-Sep-2020
Top 10 Holdings 15.83% View Top 10 Holdings Monthly data as of 30-Sep-2020

Largest Top Contributor^

CoStar Group
By 0.11%
% of fund 1.99%

Largest Top Detractor^

By -0.64%
% of fund 1.46%


Quarterly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

Top Purchase

Was (30-Jun-2020) 0.15%

Top Sale

Was (30-Jun-2020) 1.49%

Quarterly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

30-Jun-2020 - Curt Organt, Portfolio Manager ,

We do not make sector "bets," and sector weightings are formed as a residual of our bottom-up investment process. We used recent volatility as an opportunity to upgrade the portfolio and increase exposure to our highest-conviction companies, using funds sourced from our highest performers. During the quarter, trading activity spanned the various sectors. We've highlighted some of the larger purchases and sales occurring within utilities, materials, health care, and information technology.


The portfolio is overweight to the benchmark in utilities, where we have assembled a diverse mix of regulated utilities. Utilities and real estate tend to act like bond proxies due to their high yield, and we favor the utilities space for bond proxy-type exposure and thus remain overweight here and underweight to real estate.

  • We added a position in PNM Resources, a utility serving New Mexico and parts of Texas. We have a favorable view of the company's management and its customer-focused initiative to strengthen infrastructure, thereby reducing cost and improving service, via technology investments. An improving regulatory environment in New Mexico, and the state Supreme Court-mandated decision requiring the transition to zero-carbon electricity generation by 2045, also bodes well for the company.
  • We increased One Gas on recent share price weakness. The company has a durable rate-base growth profile driven by ongoing natural gas infrastructure replacement and safety spend and is led by a quality management team.
  • We trimmed shares of water and wastewater services company American Water Works on market capitalization considerations following strong performance on solid operational execution and investor preference for more defensive, less cyclical companies.


Within the sector, the portfolio's largest weights are in the chemicals, containers and packaging, and construction materials industries.

  • We found a compelling entry point in low-cost nitrogen producer CF Industries. The company has a history of strong free cash flow generation, even in challenging market environments, and we believe it offers attractive long-term potential with limited balance sheet risk.
  • We pared Vulcan Materials, the leading construction materials producer in the U.S. Shares may be pressured in the near term on uncertainty regarding the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on demand for construction and public spending, but we maintain a positive view of the company's longer-term potential.

Health Care

In health care, we have a sizable allocation to equipment and supplies, providers and services, and biotechnology names. The health care segment has been a sector of controversy over recent years amid reform legislation, attempts at repeal, and the uncertainty regarding its outcomes. We have focused on investments that we feel will benefit from the environment regardless of the end result by sticking to fundamentals and a diversified approach within biotechnology to mitigate risk.

  • We added a position in transplant diagnostic company CareDX. The company is differentiated by its focus on the transplant community, quality clinical data generation, and continued innovation. We have a positive view of its recurring revenue model and the strong gross margins from its core testing business.
  • We initiated a position in U.S. Physical Therapy, the third-largest provider of physical therapy by locations. We believe this to be a high-quality, well-run business that has the liquidity to weather the coronavirus-related downturn and emerge stronger on the other side, with a robust merger and acquisition pipeline.
  • We trimmed Quidel, a developer and manufacturer of rapid diagnostic testing solutions, following strong share price appreciation.

Information Technology

A number of the disruptive companies that are on the right side of change are featured in the sector. We remain sanguine on the sector as a whole. The portfolio has large allocations in the software, IT services, semiconductors, and electronic equipment and instruments segments. We have been able to find many niche software providers that we believe have attractive growth opportunities and barriers to ward off their competition.

  • Several of our software names stood out, generating strong returns as an acceleration in digital platforms in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic more than offset the associated disruptions. We trimmed Synopsys, a leading electronic design automation company; Ceridian HCM, a human capital management (HCM) company; and Paycom, a market leader in cloud-based payroll and HCM solutions, into strength following share price appreciation.


Largest Sector Industrials & Business Services 19.93% Was (31-Aug-2020) 19.53%
Other View complete Sector Diversification

Monthly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

Indicative Benchmark: Russell 2500 Index

Top Contributor^

Industrials & Business Services
Net Contribution 0.67%
Selection 0.51%

Top Detractor^

Consumer Discretionary
Net Contribution -0.44%


Quarterly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

Largest Overweight

Industrials & Business Services
Fund 19.93%
Indicative Benchmark 15.26%

Largest Underweight

Fund 10.35%
Indicative Benchmark 13.24%

Monthly Data as of 30-Sep-2020

30-Sep-2020 - Curt Organt, Portfolio Manager ,
Industrials and business services, information technology (IT), financials, and health care remain the dominating sectors in the portfolio, all with greater than 10% of the equity allocation. We continue to invest in select companies across various industries where we feel valuations may underestimate the sustainability of their growth or turnaround potential. This included boosting our positions within professional services, software, and IT services.

Team (As of 01-Oct-2020)

Curt J. Organt, CFA

Curt Organt is the portfolio manager of the US Smaller Companies Equity Strategy and an associate portfolio manager of the US Small-Cap Core Equity Strategy in the U.S. Equity Division. Curt is a vice president and an Investment Advisory Committee member of the US Small-Cap Core Equity, US Diversified Small-Cap Value Equity, and US Small-Cap Growth Equity Strategies. He also is a vice president of T. Rowe Price Group, Inc.

Curt’s investment experience began in 1993, and he has been with T. Rowe Price since 1995, beginning in the U.S. Equity Division. Prior to this, Curt was employed by DAP Products, Inc., as a financial and marketing analyst. 

Curt earned a B.S. in finance and philosophy from LaSalle University and an M.B.A. from Wake Forest University. Curt also has earned the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation.

CFA® and Chartered Financial Analyst® are registered trademarks owned by CFA Institute.

  • Fund manager
  • Years at
    T. Rowe Price
  • Years investment
Eric Papesh, CFA, BA, MBA

Eric Papesh is a portfolio specialist in the U.S. Equity Division of T. Rowe Price. He is based in London and serves as a proxy for equity portfolio managers with institutional clients, consultants and prospects. Mr. Papesh supports T. Rowe Price's US Smaller Companies Equity and US Large-Cap Equity Strategies offered in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and Asia-Pacific (APAC) regions. He is a vice president of T. Rowe Price Group, Inc. and T. Rowe Price International Ltd.

Mr. Papesh has 22 years of financial services experience, two of which have been with T. Rowe Price. Before joining the firm in 2014, he was a senior research analyst with Russell Investments, where he focused on US equity investment strategies.

Mr. Papesh earned a B.A. in business administration and an M.B.A. from the University of Washington. He has also earned the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.

  • Years at
    T. Rowe Price
  • Years investment

Fee Schedule

Share Class Minimum Initial Investment and Holding Amount (USD) Minimum Subsequent Investment (USD) Minimum Redemption Amount (USD) Sales Charge (up to) Investment Management Fee (up to) Ongoing Charges
Class A $1,000 $100 $100 5.00% 160 basis points 1.68%
Class I $2,500,000 $100,000 $0 0.00% 95 basis points 0.99%
Class Q $1,000 $100 $100 0.00% 95 basis points 1.04%
Class S $10,000,000 $0 $0 0.00% 0 basis points 0.04%

Please note that the Ongoing Charges figure is inclusive of the Investment Management Fee and is charged per annum.


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GIPS® Information

T. Rowe Price ("TRP") claims compliance with the Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS®). TRP has been independently verified for the twenty one- year period ended June 30, 2017 by KPMG LLP. The verification report is available upon request. Verification assesses whether (1) the firm has complied with all the composite construction requirements of the GIPS standards on a firm-wide basis and (2) the firm's policies and procedures are designed to calculate and present performance in compliance with the GIPS standards. Verification does not ensure the accuracy of any specific composite presentation.

TRP is a U.S. investment management firm with various investment advisers registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority, and other regulatory bodies in various countries and holds itself out as such to potential clients for GIPS purposes. TRP further defines itself under GIPS as a discretionary investment manager providing services primarily to institutional clients with regard to various mandates, which include U.S, international, and global strategies but excluding the services of the Private Asset Management group.

A complete list and description of all of the Firm's composites and/or a presentation that adheres to the GIPS® standards are available upon request. Additional information regarding the firm's policies and procedures for calculating and reporting performance results is available upon request

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