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Industry Information: Research Databases

Start here for all your industry information needs.

Core Databases

These are the best databases for beginning your industry information research.

Business Source Complete.


Lexis Nexis Academic


   PassPort GMID   This resource emphasizes US and European countries and consumer products, rather than durable purchases such as automobiles.


    Mintel   Some global information is given but not a lot. And consumer products like diapers and refrigerators are covered while automobiles and trucks are not.

   Market Share Reporter  can also be useful. Search a single year or multiple years. This picks up information from periodicals such as trade journals.

Custom Company Comparisons

In the  Lexis Nexis research database, ratios for any group of publicly traded companies can be compared by searching in the Company Dossier portion of the site.

Search strategy:

  • Click on the down arrow  under the Get Company Info box  to see the Company Dossier link.

    On the next screen, try clicking on the Industry tab as shown below and entering a key word or SIC code to see what companies Lexis Nexis Acadaemic includes in that industry. Some lists are so broad they will not make sense for your research focus. If so, compile your own list.

  • Compile your list of top competitors; and click on the Compare Companies tab as shown below.

    Key in ticker symbols or names for as many of those companies as you want to compare.

  • After entering all the tickers for your set of companies, you will retrieve a Company Financial Comparison giving balance sheet and income statement items, followed by the header Ratio Analysis. Here you'll find a long list of ratios.  Click here to see an example comparing ratios for Target, Costco, and Wal-mart

NOTE: This will work best with companies who are direct competitors in the industry (i.e. they have the same primary NAICS code that your company has). Comparing two companies with diversified operations may be of limited value. For example, Apple and Motorola are competing for mobile phone business; but each one competes in a good many other product markets as well. So ratios for the whole company do not give a very clear or complete picture of how they fare in the cell phone market.

Search Steps Demo

Watch a demo about finding industry profiles in  Business Source Complete.  

Or watch this demo to find country-specific industry information in  .