Finance and Accounting Research Overview

Run time: 4:50 | Requires Flash Player. | Transcript | Last updated: 7/9/2011

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Welcome to the Information and Library Services Finance and Accounting Presentation!


Hello, I'm a new UMUC student taking finance and accounting courses. One of my assignments is to do a financial and accounting performance analysis of a company and compare it to other companies in the same industry. Can you help me get started with my research?


Sure! I can show you where to find this information. First, let's briefly discuss what you might need.


Great! This will save me a lot of time! We have been instructed to find financial and accounting reports, financial ratios, and comparative company and industry financial analysis.


Ok, the best resources for this information are the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), 10-K Reports, company reports that include financial and accounting information and industry reports that include financial and accounting comparative data.

There are a number of good databases that include this information, but for now, I will focus on two primary databases. For 10-K and company reports, you can search in the Mergent Online database. For comparative industry reports, you can search in the Industry Surveys database.


Great! Can you show me how to search in both of these databases?


Certainly. Start from Information and Library Services.

Click on the link, [Research Databases.  Click on the link,] Databases by Title.

Click on the letter "M," and then click on the link for Mergent Online.

Let's begin with finding a 10-K report. Click on the Edgar Search tab. Enter a company name (ex: Marriott) into the search box, click on the last 12 months option and click on the search button.

You'll retrieve a list of SEC reports from the Edgar service. Depending on when the 10-K report was filed, you may need to scroll though the list and view it in a number of formats.

To find company reports in Mergent Online, start from the basic search screen, enter the name of a company or its ticker symbol and click on the Search button.

You will retrieve a list of results matching your search. Click on the name of the company to get detailed information.

Your search will produce a Company Details screen for the company. Click on the different tabs at the top to obtain Company Details, Company Financials, EDGAR reports, News, TearSheets, and Industry Reports. To create an Excel report of different financial information, click on Create Reports.

By the way, you can find more detailed information on how to search Mergent Online in the Mergent Online Search Tips Guide.


That's great!


Now let's move on to finding comparative industry reports.

Click on the link, Research Databases.  Click on the link, Databases by Title.

Click on the letter "I," and then click on the link for Industry Surveys.

We are now looking for an industry report on hotels or lodging to compare other companies to Marriott International. Click on the Industries tab.

In the Industry Surveys drop-down menu, select Lodging and Gaming and click on the yellow right arrow.

And there is the report! You can view information about this industry and comparative financial information.

For instance, click on the Revenues link and you will see a report of other companies financial and accounting data as it compares to Marriott.




By the way, we have two subject guides that list other resources: the Company and Industry and Accounting guides.

We also have a Business Tutorial that gives step-by-step instructions on how to find financial information.


Oh! That's fantastic. What if I need help later on?


If you need more help, please contact the library staff.

Thank you for listening to this finance and accounting virtual presentation. Visit us often for all your library information needs!