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Business Research Guide: Companies & Industries

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Researching Companies & Industries

Company information is available in several of the databases listed above. A database may or may not cover a certain firm on account of its ownership (public vs. private), geographic location, operating status (active vs. extinct), and economic significance (major/global vs. minor/local). Databases also differ in the nature and amount of information that they maintain for each company.

Likewise, industry information can be found in more than one database, but not all databases provide similar coverage. Differences in coverage may be based on geographic perspective (U.S., other country, global), sector/organization (publicly traded vs. all private sector vs. nonprofit/government), and specialization (established vs. emerging industry). When presenting industry reports, some databases follow a standardized classification system. A list of common schemes is below.