PDF Download Guide Guide to Business Research

About This Guide
There is a wide range of business-related resources available for you at Adelphi University Libraries, both online and in print. The following guide will introduce you to those that might prove most useful for your class assignments. Use the links below to jump to a specific section:

Using Quick Search on the Library Home Page
Article Databases for Business
Industry and Company Information
Online Encyclopedias, Dictonaries, and Handbooks for Business
Free Internet Resources
Trade Associations
Small Business/Franchising Information
Census and Demographic Information
Other Government Resources
Books: Search Terms to Use in Alicat

Prepared by Prof. Debbi Smith, 12/2010 - 516.877.3522 /

Using Quick Search on the Library home page
Quick Search features several tabs:
  • Books, Videos, Etc: Use ALICAT, the Adelphi Libraries online library catalog, to see what Adelphi owns in print or has access to online.
  • Article databases: You can Select a Subject (Business) or Browse Databases A-Z if you are looking for a specific database by name.
  • Journal Titles: You can type in the specific title you are looking for and find out the dates for the online full text coverage of that journal, as well as any print holdings physically held by the Adelphi Libraries. You can also browse Journals by Subject (Business and Economics) or Browse Journals A-Z.

Click on the RESEARCH HELP tab for links to the Navigating Our Site video tutorial and the full list of Guides & Tutorials.

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Article Databases for Business
The Library subscribes to many databases that contain popular, scholarly and trade news related to business activities.  Most article databases contain the full text of a journal and all allow you to search by subject.  There are also databases that provide corporate financial information and industry analyses.

ABI/Inform Global/Dateline/Trade & Industry (ProQuest): Full text for over 4,000 general and academic business periodicals, as well as local/regional business news and trade/industry periodicals.  Most of the articles indexed are available full text and full image. Also provides information on 60,000 companies and in-depth coverage of business conditions, trends, corporate strategies and tactics, management techniques, competitive and product information, and a wide variety of other business related topics.   Primarily academic, theoretical articles but includes full text Wall Street Journal.

ProQuest Accounting & Tax: Provides access to current journals, trade publications, working papers and dissertations on accounting, tax management, auditing, tax, financial law and more, with some publications in full text.

Business Source Complete (EBSCO): Provides full text for more than 10,000 scholarly journals and business periodicals, some dating back to 1886.  Also includes company and industry profiles, country and economic reports, SWOT analyses and financial data.

LEXIS/NEXIS Academic Universe: Full-text coverage from over 5,600 publications of general news, business, legal, governmental and other topics.  This database provides current news and press releases, which is important for finding information about small companies. Good for facts and events related to companies and industries.   Also includes socioeconomic profiles and news by country, SEC filings and annual reports, and analyst reports.


Regional Business News (EBSCO): Provides full text coverage for regional business publications, including business journals, newspapers and newswires from all metropolitan and rural areas within the United States.

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Industry and Company Information

NetAdvantage (Standard and Poor’s):  Offers on-line access to S & P's Industry Surveys, Global Industry Surveys, Company Profiles, Stock Reports, Corporation Records, and The Register of Corporations. It provides business and investment information for 13,000 publicly held U.S. corporations, and includes independent S&P research, data, and commentary on stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and industries. The comprehensive overviews of 51 major U.S. industries are updated every six months. For each industry, you'll find the Current environment - emerging trends and recent developments; Industry profile - major players and market share data, market/demand developments; How the industry operates - business/economic cycles, distribution, regulation and legislation; Key ratios and statistics - benchmarks of the industry's health; Comparative company analysis - tables listing historical financial data. Choose your industry from the Industry Surveys drop-down on the right. Global industry surveys and company reports are also present.  The database also includes mutual fund screening.

Business and Company Resource Center (Gale): Contains company financial information, investment reports, industry statistics, products and brands, and association data.  In addition to full-text articles from industry and trade journals, there is access to the analyst report aggregator Investext.  Also contains online versions of traditional print resources such as the Ward’s business directories.

Business Source Complete (EBSCO):  In addition to full text journal coverage (see above), this database also provides 10-20 page company overviews for the 10,000 largest global companies, provided by Datamonitor. These reviews include Overview, Key Facts, Business Description, History, Major Products and Services, and Top Competitors.

D & B Million Dollar Directory: Includes 160,000 alphabetically arranged large public and private companies ($500,000+ net worth, 250+ employees, or $25,000,000 + sales).  Allows you to locate competitors in a specific geographic area, and provides basic information such as address, key officers, sales volume and lines of business.  REF HC102.D8 (print)

D&B Regional Directory: Long Island, New York Area: Area companies listed alphabetically and by Standard Industrial Class (SIC) code.  REF HG4057.N7 D86 (print)

Encyclopedia of Business Information Sources (Gale):  Online guide to print and electronic sources of information of interest to business professionals arranged alphabetically by subject.

Hoover’s Online (Hoovers, a D&B Company): Provides timely and detailed information on over 50,000 public AND private companies in the U.S., financial comparisons of companies and competitors, defunct companies and annual/quarterly financials from 1994 - present.

LEXIS/NEXIS Academic Universe: In addition to full-text coverage of general news, business, legal, governmental topics (see above), this database also provides facts and events related to companies and industries, including SEC filings and annual reports

Mergent Online (D&B): Contains information updated daily on over 15,000 U.S. companies and 25,000 international companies: business descriptions, subsidiaries, officers and directors, annual reports, historical stock pricing dating back over 30 years, 15 years of detailed financial statements, historical information outlining merger and acquisition activity, Moody's debt ratings and corporate bond ratings, detailed EDGAR filings. Also includes detailed industry reports based on sectors and countries; financials and histories for companies that have merged, were acquired, went bankrupt from 1996 onwards; country profiles (under Advanced Search).

ProQuest Asian Business & Reference:  Provides information on companies, economies, markets, and overall business conditions throughout the Eastern Hemisphere, as well as on international trade, dating as far back as 1972.

ReferenceUSA (infoUSA):  Enables users to conduct online searches for detailed information on US businesses and people.  The U.S. Businesses module contains detailed information on more than 14 million U.S. businesses which is updated monthly.  The U.S. Residential module contains information on 210 million U.S. households.  Custom searches allow a researcher to combine 30 criteria to analyze the competitive landscape of specific demographic markets.

RMA Annual Statement Studies: Contains composite financial data on manufacturing, wholesaling, retailing, service, and contracting lines of business.  Arranged by SIC code, this reference tool makes it possible to compare one company’s performance relative to others in the same line of business.  REF HF5681.B2 R6 OR a Google search for the name of your company

Many companies use their home pages as a marketing or communications tool, and may contain annual reports, news articles, business ventures, and information about products and services.

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Online Encyclopedias, Dictonaries, and Handbooks for Business
Background information for areas related to business, finance, economics, management and accounting can be found online in the following Adelphi eReference book databases by clicking on the eReference Books tab on the Books, Videos, Etc screen:
  • Credo Reference
  • Gale Virtual Referenced Library
  • Sage Reference Online
The Gale Virtual Reference Library is especially noteworthy for its business collection which includes The Business Plans Handbooks; Bridging the Culture Gap: A Practical Guide to International Business Communication; International Directory of Company Histories.

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Free Internet Resources
See these and other Internet resources listed in the Library web site by clicking on the Internet Resources tab on the Research by Subject –Business page.  See also the government web sites listed later in this guide

A multi-resource site with access to news, articles, other accounting sites, links to discussion groups, and tools such as calculators, forms and templates.

Baker Library Research Guides (Harvard Business School):
These Guides from the library of one of the top business school in the country focus on topical resources to help in business related research as well as general business topics, specific subjects, industries, and countries. There are also Guides that step you through the research process.  While many of the links are proprietary for Harvard students, most link to valid, authenticated resources that can be obtained through the Adelphi Libraries.

Business Plans and Profiles Index (Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh):
Lists types of small businesses and a corresponding sample business plan, profile or book; if the plan or profile is available online then a link is provided.  There is an alphabetical index by broad topics, which are further divided by specific resources for particular businesses.

Thomas J. Watson Library of Business and Economics Business and Economics Research Guides (Columbia University)
Like the Baker Library site mentioned above, this site lists different resources that are relevant for different business related subject areas.  Many of these resources can be found at the Adelphi Libraries.

Doing Business (World Bank): 
A site from the World Bank that provides in depth data and reports about regulations for doing business in 175 economies, along with comparative analyses. 

The Ethisphere Institute is an international think tank dedicated to best practices in business ethics, corporate social responsibility and sustainability.  It contains a listing of the world’s most ethical companies, and provides examples of successful companies that have succeeded while following strong ethical standards.  The site contains articles from the Ethisphere Magazine as well as reports and news items.

Liber8 (Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis):
An economic portal for librarians and students, this site provides centralized access to important, free online economic materials, databases and websites.  This site includes the International Economic Statistics (IES) database, which identifies other free internet resources and sites available for specific countries.  Other economic tools are available from this branch of the Federal Reserve Bank, but this page was created specifically with university reference and government document librarians in mind.

Rutgers University Libraries Business Research Guide:
This Guide has descriptions of databases and reference books in the collections of Rutgers University, many of which are also available from the Adelphi University Libraries.  There are links to more than 3,000 selected business and management-related Internet resources.  The home page is arranged alphabetically by business topic (i.e., Accounting, Banks and Financial Service, etc.).

Yahoo! Finance:

The home page contains a daily market summary, market indexes, currency rates, financial news and links to other pages such as News and Commentary (with articles from business and financial publications, web sites, leading experts).  Company profiles include key statistics, SEC Edgar filings, headline news and company events, industry information, and historic stock price ranges back 30 years.

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Trade Associations
Valuable information about companies (i.e., statistics, trends, demographics, competitors) can be found by researching the relevant trade association, such as American Bakers Association, National Meat Association, etc.  Trade journals also have information on industry trends and competitive information.

The Encyclopedia of Associations: National Organizations of the U.S.; International Organizations; Regional, State, and Local Organizations (Gale): Nonprofit membership organizations of the U.S of national scope, worldwide membership organizations, including U.S.-based organizations with a multinational membership, and local organizations.  Coverage includes categories such as trade, business and commercial, legal, governmental, public administration, military, cultural, educational, veterans, hereditary, patriotic, athletic and sports, and fan clubs.

National Trade and Professional Associations of the United States (Washington, DC: Columbia Books)  REF HD2425.N3 (print)

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Small Business/Franchising Information
Keup, Erwin J., Franchise Bible (Irvine, CA: Entrepreneur Press, 2004)  REF HF5429.235.U5 K478 2004 (print)

Strauss, Steven D., The Small Business Bible (Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2005) REF HD62.7 .S875 2005 (print)

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Census and Demographic Information
The homepage for the Census Bureau includes links to all of its components.  Population, housing, and economic data are the key data presented.  The 1990 and 2000 decennial census data is available, as is the annual American Community Survey, which provides additional current sample data. Profiles of geographic areas are available and thematic population maps by age and income can be generated.  Key historical data is also on this site: the Statistical Abstract back to 1878 and the Historical Statistics of the U.S. 1790-1970.

  •  -   The Economic Census provides detailed industry and geographic data every 5 years and serves as the bench mark for most other economic programs. The home page has links to all 2002 Census results as they are released; the complete 1997 results; related programs
  • American Factfinder:  -   To access the demographic information of the U.S. Census Bureau.
  • Statistical Abstract of the United States:  Published since 1878, this is the authoritative and comprehensive summary of statistics on the social, political, and economic organization of the United States.  It is available online and in print.

There is so much data on the census site that it takes persistence to drill down and locate it all.  To make best use of the Economic Census refer to the following resources:

  • Boettcher, Jennifer C and Leonard M. Gaines, Industry Research Using the Economic Census: How to Find it, How to Use It (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2004) REF  HC101 .B594 2004  (print) 
  • CensusScope:  -  Free online tool based at the University of Michigan that allows users to delve into and manipulate national, state, county and metropolitan data from the census.
  • Demographics USA County Edition:  Statistics on purchasing power, economic conditions, market surveys. REF DESK HC110.C6 S847
Sourcebook of ZIP Code Demographics: Presents census data by zip codes and the name of the state to create a detailed compendium of statistical data on consumer markets. REF HA 203.S67 2009 (print)

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Other Government Resources (U.S. Department of Commerce)
This site brings together resources from across the U.S. government to assist American business in international sales.  It provides trade leads and access to the U.S. Commercial Service’s Market Research Library database, which contains country commercial guides, industry overviews, and market updates.  Most of the information is free, but requires registration.  -   The SEC website that contains the required filings of publicly held companies such as the 10K, quarterly reports (10Q), and other ownership filings.  -  The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis website with statistics on the national income and product accounts (NIPA’s) such as the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).  - The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has information on inflation, consumer spending, wages, earnings, productivity, employment, demographics, and geographic profiles.  - The home page for the Small Business Administration -   Key economic indicators from the Bureau of Economic Analysis and the Census Bureau from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economics and Statistics Administration.

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Books: Search Terms to Use in Alicat

Books related to business can be found by key word searches or by searching in ALICAT under such subject headings as:

Accounting Intercultural communication
Business Etiquette Investments
Business Communication Management
Business Writing Market Segmentation
Consumer Behavior Market Surveys
Consumers Marketing
Economics Marketing Research
Finance Organizational Behavior
Finance, Personal Small Business
Franchises (Retail Trade) Target Marketing

Keep in mind:

  • Connect NY:  You may obtain books that Adelphi does not own but are held by other academic libraries in New York by clicking on the Connect NY link in ALICAT. Can also be used to borrow books that have been taken out.
  • Interlibrary Loan: You may obtain books (not in Connect NY) and journal articles that Adelphi does not have, either electronically or in print, by clicking on the ILL (Inter-Library Loan) link. You must create an account in ILLiad before your first use.

For additional information, please contact:

Adelphi University Library
Reference Desk
Adelphi University
P.O. Box 701
Garden City, NY 11530-0701

p - 516.877.3574
e -

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