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NBA 5120 Fall 2020, Equity Investment Research: Company Information

Key Resources

INVESTOR RELATIONS departments of publicly traded companies will often have a website with SEC filings, annual reports, presentations (including earnings calls), and press releases. This is an excellent starting place when researching a company. Find the investor relations website by searching the internet with the company name and the phrase "investor relations".


Capital IQMergent Online


Other resources

Primary vs. Secondary Sources

Primary sources are first-hand historical evidence or an original account of an event, especially used as research material (Canadian Oxford Dictionary, 2004). Examples include registration statements, prospectuses and annual reports filed on Form 10-K, and earnings call transcripts.

Secondary sources are analyses and interpretations of primary sources and events. Examples include company profiles, SWOT analysis, and analyst reports from banks.

Note that many company financials can be downloaded "as presented" in their filings or standardized to a data publisher's template. Think of the as presented data as primary source and the standardized as secondary source.

    Pros Cons
  • Understanding of what data is available and ability to use all of it.
  • Ability to custom analyze and model the data as you want.
  • Time consuming and/or expensive to collect.
  • May need to do additional work to compare companies side-by-side.


  • Readibly available in downloadble format.
  • Easy to compare companies to each other with standardized data.
  • Potential for bias, inaccurate data, and/or missing information.
  • Data given "as is" which limits your options for analyzing.


Factiva Tips


Factiva is a powerful way to search multiple news sources at once for company and industry information. It is ideal for gathering background information on your company and learning about what issues they are addressing, their strategies, and products. 

Factiva allows you to narrow search results to specific types of content. For example, set the subject to Transcript to filter for earnings call transcripts and interviews. Below are some guidelines for creating a targeted search in Factiva which will allow you to weed out extraneous results.


For Articles Containing

Both the word Nokia and the exact phrase emerging markets.

Nokia and emerging markets

Either Michelin or Firestone.

Michelin or Firestone

At least 5 mentions of Microsoft.

atleast5 Microsoft

Vodafone in the same paragraph as telecommunications.

Vodafone same telecommunications

President within 3 words of Obama, where Obama is the third word (there can be 0-2 words between), and the terms appear in that exact order. You must enter a number with this operator, between 1 and 10.

President w/3 Obama

Any words that begin with telecom.

You must use at least 3 characters before the truncation (*) sign and it must be used at the end of a word only.



Either globalization or globalisation, or other wildcard spellings.


The words U.S. stock market and word count greater than 5,000, to identify longer articles about the stock market. Do not use commas in large numbers.

U.S. stock market and wc>5000