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Business: WSU ALUMNI AND COMMUNITY USERS

This is a guide to awesome resources for business research FAQs. It also links to resource handouts created for specific business classes taught at WSU.

WSU Alumni and Community Users

As a WSU alumni or community user, you are welcome to use many of the proprietary resources on this Business Guide as long as you are on the Wright State campus. You will need to get a guest computer account from the Circulation Desk that's located on the 1st floor of the Dunbar Library. This account will allow you to log in on any of the computer workstations located on the library's 2nd floor.

This page is intended to assist you with business research using free but reputable resources available on the web. You do not need to be on the Wright State campus to use the resources listed below. In fact, you can access these resources from anywhere in the world.

Note that local public libraries will allow you remote access to their business sources, but you need to first go to the library in person and apply for a library account. This Cleveland State University: Business Resources at Ohio Public Libraries research guide will list business sources available at the different public libraries throughout Ohio.

Business and Financial Term Definitions

Company Research

Business and Financial Information

Learning more about a small private company can be difficult. Private companies are not legally bound to publicly disclose their business and financial information, and many will not do so for competitive reasons. You can try to locate the company website. If you have a Dayton Metro Library Card Number as well as a Library Card PIN, you may use one of their databases called Reference USA Business. This database will provide information about a private company that you wouldn’t otherwise find on its website.

Fortunately, learning more about a publicly-traded company is a completely different story :-). Due to the existence of investors, this company is legally required to make its business and financial information freely available to the general public. This information comes in the form of 10-K reports which are filed annually to a government body called the SEC (Securities & Exchange Commission). Note that foreign companies that trade on the U.S. market (for eg. Honda Motor on NYSE) will file 20-F reports, not 10-Ks.

So where might you locate 10-K or 20-F reports?

  --  Company website (look for sections called Investors or Investor Relations)

Investment Information

If you are looking for investment information on stocks and mutual funds, you may try another Dayton Metro Library database called Morningstar.

Industry Research

Industry Analysis

Industry analysis is the study of external environmental factors that may affect a company’s performance. These factors include market trends, government regulations, competition or consumer preferences.

Let’s say you’re looking for an analysis of the beer industry. You can use Google and do a search for BEER INDUSTRY SITE:.ORG. Or you may try BEER MARKET RESEARCH SITE:.ORG. The SITE:.ORG will, to some extent, point you to industry reports released by trade associations. Some of the reports are free; others are not.

Another search you can try is BEER INDUSTRY SITE:.GOV or BEER MARKET RESEARCH SITE:.GOV. These searches will isolate your results to information released by the government.

Industry Statistics

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