UCB Libraries

Finance Research Guide

  • Getting
    Started
  • Financial
    Research
     
  • Investment/
    Banking Data
  • Company &
    Industry Data  
  • Economic
    Data
  • More
    Help

Starting your Research

If you are looking for articles or books on finance, check out the financial research tab. But, the probability is that you are looking for some form of data (statistics, data sets, etc.).

The other tabs will walk you through some of the sources for data, but before you get started searching for numbers there are a few things we recommend deciding:

  1. Are you looking for one single number or a series of data?
    If you are looking for a single number then those databases that reference datasets are going to require you to download a large quantity of data and run your analysis on it. You will be better off looking at databases promising access to easy to use statistics.
  2. Are you looking for charts and graphs or do you plan to create those yourself?
    Some databases will not only find the numbers you need. Some databases are more in-depth and will let you output charts, graphs and sometimes even maps.
  3. Are you looking for US or foreign data?
    The majority of the sources on this guide will be for the United states, but if the source provides international coverage, that is the place to go for foreign data.

Looking for articles, newspapers or other in-depth studies of finance? The databases below can help you find the research you need to conduct your financial analysis.

Business Source Complete CU
This database provides comprehensive coverage articles on all things business. You can find articles, SWOT analysis, industry and market research and much more.

ABI/Inform CU
This database complements Business Source Complete providing more coverage on all things business. You can use this to find information on business and economic conditions, corporate strategies, management techniques, as well as competitive and product information.

Business Insights Global CU
This database provides company, industry and market information. It is the best source for market share and rankings.

Factiva CU
This is the most comprehensive source for international news coverage. You can also find recent company information both in regards to financial statements and news stories.

LexisNexis Academic CU
This database provides the most comprehensive coverage of US news. In addition you can find legal and company information, with some coverage on private companies.

This tab breaks the categories of investment and banking data into the topical areas. Want to learn more about the various investment instruments? The Securities and Exchange Commission provides in-depth descriptions at Investor.gov.

Securities

Morningstar CU
This database features data and analysis on international and domestic stocks, mutual funds, and exchange traded funds. You can access the data, as well as investment analysis of the stock.

Thomson One CU
This database provides historical stock and bond data that can be matched to major indexes. You can also find in Market Views tearsheets on corporate and government bonds. In addition, this is one of the most comprehensive sources of investment analyst's reports.
Must use in Internet Explorer.

Mergent Online and Mergent Webreports CU
Mergent Webreports provides data on corporate bonds as well as access to Moody's and Mergent corporate manuals, but all data is in PDF. Mergent online provides equity pricing by company in a downloadable format.

S&P NetAdvantage CU
This database provides daily stock prices for the major US exchanges, as well as corporate bonds. In each company the "How to Analyze" provides in-depth analysis of the value of the stocks.

Wharton Research Data Services (WRDS) CU
This database contains stocks and bond data, choose the Stock Prices or Bonds and fixed income data on the home page. WRDS allows in-depth data manipulation of complex data sets.
Use restricted to CU Boulder students and faculty, submit your colorado.edu email address to get a password.

Factiva CU
This database primarily provides newspaper articles, but if you look under "Company Information" you can find current and historical quotes from over 80 exchanges worldwide, you can also chart the particular stock against these indexes using the charting feature.

Value Line CU
This database provides current and historic stock prices and company information, including the Value Line investment reports.

Treasury Direct
This is the government site for all data relating to US government securities.

Ibbotoson SBBI Yearbook
This book is put out by Morningstar annually and gives an overview of the capital market, including an examination of both US and international markets from 1926 to the present. For those studying historic markets this also provides in-depth descriptions of how they do their calculations, which can help inform your own studies.

Looking for older stocks data from 1980-1999? We have the daily stock prices for NYSE, ASE and NASDAQ on microfiche. Please come to the Business Library desk for assistance using this collection.

Funds

Morningstar CU
Morningstar provides coverage of thousands of funds (both mutual and exchange-traded) and allows you to search by type or name.

Thomson One CU
If you know the fund symbol, you can find price data on the fund, but the unique addition is the ability to chart the fund price in comparison to the major indexes.
Must use in Internet Explorer.

Factiva
CU
Factiva provides quotes on funds, with the ability to create charts, for over 80 exchanges worldwide. This database only allows you to search for funds by name, for category searches try another source.

Ibbotoson SBBI Yearbook
This book is put out by Morningstar annually and gives an overview of the capital market, including an examination of both US and international markets from 1926 to the present. For those studying historic markets this also provides in-depth descriptions of how they do their calculations, which can help inform your own studies.

Commodities

Commodities Futures Trading Commission
The Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) is the regulatory body for all commodities trading in the United States. Their site provides access to filings, market reports, and all things relating to commodities. Their list of trading organizations can be useful in determining where to investigate further.

FAOSTAT
This site from the Food and Agriculture Organization provides selected information on commodity balances and prices internationally.

CRB Commodity Yearbook
The Commodities Research Board Commodity Yearbook is released annually and provides analysis of the various commodities markets.

Banking

FRED
This site from the Federal Reserve provides a variety of economic data, but under categories you can find a variety of data on banking, such as commercial banking, conditions of banks, and more going back historically.

Federal Reserve
The Federal Reserve guides monetary policy for the US government, as such they study and provide data on a variety of banking related topics, such as bank assets and liabilities and bank structure.

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)
The FDIC insures the deposits made at banks. They provide data on failing banks, banking performance, and banking deposits.

International Monetary Fund (IMF)
The IMF is an international organization formed to work for "global growth and economic stability." Some of this comes in the form of monetary support and/or policy advice to developing countries and those facing economic difficulties. As such, they track a number of economic factors, including banking. For more in-depth data check out the IMF e-Library data.

World Bank Data

The World Bank is another international organization working towards "a world free of poverty." As such, they study the financial markets of the world and provide that data free of charge.

Banking Guide
The list above just lets you know the major sources of banking data, but for a more in-depth list check out this guide from the Government Information Library.

Public Companies

Mergent Online
Search by company name, ticker, SIC or NAICS code. Choose your company, then look for the "Company Financials" tab. All data is downloadable to Excel. Use the Mergent Toolbox to easily create spreadsheets and reports comparing up to 500 companies.

LexisNexis Academic CU
Access company data from sources such as Dun & Bradstreet, Morningstar, Hoover's, and Standard & Poor's in the "Company Dossier."

Business Insights: Global CU
Use the "Comparison Charts" tab to quickly compare companies on data points such as revenue or sales per employee. Create charts for industry-level data using NAICS codes or descriptions.

Hoover's CU
Under "Financials" dropdown menu, "Financial Summary" includes comparison to industry & market median, annual income statements, and competitor data.

Wharton Research Data Services (WRDS) CU
WRDS contains in-depth company information, including the Compustat data set.
Use restricted to CU Boulder students and faculty, submit your colorado.edu email address to get a password.

Private Companies

As private companies are under no obligation to disclose their financial records to the public, this data can be tricky - if not impossible - to find. The sources below are the best places to look for private company financials.

PrivCo CU
Private company financials and revenues, private M&A deals and deal multiples, private firm valuations, venture capital fundings, private equity deals, private and family ownership breakdowns, bankruptcies, restructurings, and more.

Lexis Nexis Academic CU
Lexis Nexis is incredibly valuable for private company data. Use this link to find in-depth information about private companies, venture capital firms, and others.

ReferenceUSA CU
ReferenceUSA is mainly a directory source, but sometimes includes estimated sales, operations, number of employees, and more.



How are private companies valuated? See "Private Company Valuation" in the PrivCo Knowledge Bank.

Industry Ratios


Industry Ratios are often used as benchmarks for business or financial projections. The three sources below are available at the Business Library Desk.

 

 

Sometimes you can find industry ratios in an industry survey. The two databases below are your best sources for finding industry ratios online.

 


FRED
FRED from the federal reserve provides current and historic on all aspects of the US economy.

Federal Reserve
The Federal Reserve provides economic data, focusing on banking and finance.

American Factfinder
American Factfinder provides data on the citizens of the United States. In addition you can find data on US businesses in the economic census and annual economic surveys.

International Monetary Fund (IMF)
The IMF provides quick economic data on the countries of the world, as well as research on developing economies.

World Bank
World Bank's mission is "working for a world without poverty." This work has resulted in in-depth research (World Bank elibrary) and data.

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What would you like help with?

Commodities are "raw materials, farm products, and sometimes semi-finished materials traded in designated quantities and prices for future delivery." (Encyclopedic Dictionary of Business Terms, Wilbur Cross, 1995)
Securities are "documents and instruments that identify legal ownership of physical commodities and other assets, or that establish legal claim to itemized capital." (Encyclopedic Dictionary of Business Terms, Wilbur Cross, 1995) Securities generally come in the form of stocks and bonds.