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Monte Carlo calculations were used to study the coercive behavior of small spherical ferromagnetic particles as a function of particle size and temperature. The influence of the surface anisotropy on the coercive field is discussed. Enhancement of the coercive field compared to its bulk value is observed in particles surrounded by a spherical cell with enhanced anisotropy while in the pure ferromagnetic particles an enhanced surface anisotropy with the easy axis normal to the surface does not give such enhancement. These results are in agreement with experimental findings. © 1997 American Institute of Physics.