This is the "Financial Statement Analysis Industry Project" page of the "ACCT/FINC 447" guide.
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This guide should help you with your Financial Statement Analysis Industry Project, and the rest of your coursework in ACCT/FINC 447. Remember: You can always contact me directly for help as well. Gold stars next to certain resources indicate best bets.
Last Updated: Oct 26, 2016 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

Financial Statement Analysis Industry Project Print Page

Subject Guide

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Tom Sullivan
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  • Harvard Business School Citation Guide
    Your professor has recommended you use the HBS Citation Guide. You should see a link to that guide on this main Research Guides page from Harvard's Baker Library.
  • Purdue OWL
    The Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL) has a great MLA citation guide, as well as a few others. Top source for some basic guidance.
  • TAMU University Writing Center
    Along with a lot of other really great resources (including in-person assistance!) to help you write great papers, the Writing Center also has this page with tons of links to useful information, including a section on citations.


You must reference the ORIGINAL SOURCE DOCUMENT (aka Form 10-K, etc.) for every figure you obtain.  The database suggestions provided herein are useful tools for extracting and analyzing data from source documents, but you must always be sure you understand, and can cite, the ultimate source.

Public Company Financial Statements

As well as these databases, don't forget the company's own website!  There is often an 'Investor Relations' section which will provide access to potentially very useful information.

  • Mergent Online  Icon
    One of the easiest ways to access company filings and annual reports. Also provides you with a list of suggested competitors and allows you to build your own customized reports, comparative charts and more. Can search by company name/ticker; company homepage includes section on 'company news'.
  • Morningstar Investment Research Center
    One of the premier sources for investment research. Search by company name/ticker. In depth stock analysis and performance information including information on insider activity and major shareholders. Best source for information on executives and the Board of Directors. ALSO: capital structure data including an in-depth look at company debt and maturity dates.
  • Morningstar Document Research  Icon
    An excellent way to access the SOURCE DOCUMENTS. You can get your company's SEC filings from the EDGAR government database, but Morningstar has a much friendlier user interface. You can search filings by keyword etc. and take yourself directly to that specific relevant section etc.
  • Orbis
    Best source for foreign operations information; one of the only databases that might provide some segmented financial information (by geography, for example). Also a great source for background industry information and industry reports, especially if operations are global or centered in a particular region abroad. UNIQUE: Information on recently accepted/pending intellectual property (royalty agreements, patents, trademarks), which may be integral to outlook.
    "All companies, foreign and domestic, are required to file registration statements, periodic reports, and other forms [with the SEC] electronically through EDGAR. Anyone can access and download this information for free. Here you'll find links to a complete list of filings available through EDGAR and instructions for searching the EDGAR database."

Industry Background

"...overview of industry, unique attributes and how each company fits into this industry sector... ...key relevant financial data"

  • IBISWorld  Icon
    Our no. 1 source for industry information. Examines, in depth: industry performance and outlook, key economic drivers, major markets, products and services, the competitive landscape, the major companies in the industry and operating conditions.
  • BizMiner
    Industry financial profiles, market reports and a tool called the 'Competitive Market Analyzer'. Unique feature is the ability to look at the industry/market at the state or metro area level.
  • NetAdvantage
    As well as company profiles (check them out!), this database includes industry surveys (you can view archived surveys as well, usually back to the early-00s). Includes industry trends, ratios and statistics. Also sub-industry reviews, so you can sometimes explore more specialized industries. You can also search industries by company name, if you're unsure of industry classification or wish to see a potentially different classification.
  • Plunkett Research Online
    Only broad industry classifications, but another perspective on market research and trends, major companies and their executives, statistics and industry associations (which may be a place to find more data on the industry later).
  • Business Source Complete
    Notice that the 'Browse' box to the right of the homepage has Company Profiles, Industry Profiles, Market Research Reports and even SWOT Analyses. These are limited, but you might luck upon your company or industry in here, and the unique information will not be available elsewhere.
  • ABI/Inform Complete
    Under the 'Browse' option, you'll see two sources highlighted for industry and market research: BMI Industry Reports and First Research. Both of these are highly regarded sources for background information; BMI reports include industry outlook and upstream/downstream analysis and First Research provides a brief overview of competitive landscape, upcoming regulations and business challenges, trends and opportunities.

Market Data

"economics..." ...factors that may impact the company's/companies'/industry's profitability... "...pricing, product differentiation, etc."

  • Mintel Reports
    Contents are divided into broad sectors, demographics or trends. Reports include analyst insight you can't find elsewhere, an overview of current market developments, consumer background info (cross-sales, attitudes, habits, etc.), market share of major providers and all the raw data used to compile the report. Global coverage.
  • Mintel Market Sizes
    Short reports on industries, as broken into the market in individual countries. Short reports include market size, market segmentation, market shares, historical and forecasted growth rates and potentially relevant socio-economic data.
  • Passport GMID
    Navigate data by broad categories: Industries, Economies, Consumers and/or Companies. Strengths are statistics and analysis. You can limit your data by geography, or look at the industry on a global scale. Also a great source for opinion pieces by experts surveying the industry.
  • Economist Intelligence Unit
    No. 1 source for economic and business environment data by country.

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