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Company Research

Getting Started

Company Research Guide Overview – Video Link 

Public Companies
Private Companies

Public companies in the United States are required by law to file periodic reports and other forms with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). These include the 10-K (annual) and 10-Q (quarterly) reports. Do not overlook the 8-K (other events) reports, these will outline significant changes affecting the company's management or organizational structure. For example; CEO deaths or resignations, layoffs, bankruptcy, etc.

Private companies are not required by law to file reports or forms with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). However, if a private company has public subsidiaries the information is reported out. And some of the larger private companies push financial information to the public voluntarily.

Use Google Finance to determine if your company is public or private. 

Review the company's website which could hold a wealth of information and intelligence about the firm. Use the resources listed below to find out even more about the company you are researching.




Company Profiles   Get an overview of the company, public companies will have financials, private companies will not.


SWOT Analyses   Review the SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunity & Threats) analysis report.


Financial Analyst Reports

  Investment banks and other financial service bureaus produce reports about both public and private companies.


SEC Filings   Public companies are required to file a series of reports for the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission ( Check out the chapter titled "Risk Factors" within a company's 10-K.


Private Company Information   Private companies do not have SEC filings, however Data Axle may have "business expenditure" information.


Non-Profit Company Information   Non-profit companies must update their status with the Internal Revenue Service ( annually.


Business Librarian

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Loretta Wallace, MLS

All consultations will be conducted online using Zoom.

Please send all questions about class assignments, database resources or research projects via email.

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