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Business Management: Company Information

Company Financial Information
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Company and Industry Research Tutorial

Steps to Company Research

Identify and Profile the Company

First, you'll want information on the company and its line of business, history and leadership. Determine whether it is a public or private company and whether it is a parent or subsidiary.

Company profiles provide background information and often identify major competitors. Some sources may include analysis of a company's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats or other forecasts. 

Visit the Company's Website

Companies often recognize the value of communicating directly with their customers and investors, and corporate websites can be an excellent source of information about a company's product or service, performance and vision. Publicly-traded companies are likely to include recent annual reports to stockholders. Be sure to evaluate all content on a company's own website carefully, as the potential for bias does exist.

Find Current News and Articles about the Company

Articles in the business press are likely to give you insights into a company's current operations, strategy, performance and competition. Article databases can be used to find articles from newspapers, magazines and journals that cover business topics.  There are also many publicly-available websites devoted to business news.

Examine the Company's Financial Filings and Market Performance

Public companies are required to file periodic financial statements with the SEC, which can be searched using EDGAR. These filings are also commonly available through the sources that provide company profiles. You can also find stock reports, which offer expert analysis of the likely performance of a public company's stock.

Survey the Industry and Competition

To fully understand a company, you will also want to understand the industry in which it operates. Industry profiles can help you to better understand the overall context of your company's operations, as well as its suppliers and competitors.

General Company Information

Each of the following subscription resources can be used to find company profiles and/or financial information.  Company profiles may include such information as corporate history, executive leadership, financial performance, market share, and more.

Don't forget to look for a company's own website, too.  Large public companies are especially likely to have detailed information, including annual reports and financial statements, available on their corporate websites.

Hoover’s Company Records

Information for over 40,000 companies, including company overview, industry information, leadership and historical financials.

Lexis-Nexis Company Dossier

Provides up-to-date information to conduct research on and compare various companies, financial statements and reports, and the latest news the business world.


In-depth business information on companies in North America, United Kingdom, Europe, Asia-Pacific as well as emerging markets, with the ability to search for companies by name, by geography or across industries.