Business Writing 3016: Getting Started

This guide will help students use both library and web resources to find company and industry information. Additionally, the resources listed in this guide will help students complete a final project on analyzing a specific company.

Research Strategies

Public vs. Private Company Information

Public companies issue shares of stock that are traded openly on one or more exchange, such as the NASDAQ or NYSE. They must file various forms and documents about their financial performance and governance structure with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Private companies are not traded on any stock exchange, and they generally do not have to file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Consequently, finding reliable information on private companies can be quite challenging.

Consider these tips for finding and using information on private companies:

  • Look for directory listings, company profiles, and news articles using the databases and websites on this guide.
  • Try to find local news coverage in the areas where the company's headquarters or other facilities are located.  
  • Financials for private companies are often reported as "estimates" and may not be current.
  • Many private companies have websites with useful information.

Industrial Classification Code

Industry Analysis

Industry Analysis is a type of business research that focuses on the status of an industry. Industrial classification can be broken down by sectors, subsectors, and industry groups into specific industries A complete industrial analysis usually includes a review of an industry’s recent performance, its current status, and the outlook for the future. Many analyses include a combination of text and statistical data.

 

In the past, a four digit classification system was used. This system was called the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) system. The government used up to four numbers to classify all industries into sectors, subsectors, and/or a specific industry.

 

In 1997, a new six digit classification system called NAICS  (NAKES) was created with the cooperation of Canada and Mexico so that all North American business activity could be analyzed.  To search NAICS, go to http://www.census.gov/eos/www/naics/

 

NAICS sectors are:

11

Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting

53

Real Estate and Rental and Leasing

21

Mining, Quarrying, and Oil and Gas Extraction

54

Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services

22

Utilities

55

Management of Companies and Enterprises

23

Construction

56

Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services

31-33

Manufacturing

61

Educational Services

42

Wholesale Trade

62

Health Care and Social Assistance

44-45

Retail Trade

71

Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation

48-49

Transportation and Warehousing

72

Accommodation and Food Services

51

Information

81

Other Services (except Public Administration)

52

Finance and Insurance

92

Public Administration

 

Companies like Goodyear, Bridgestone, Continental, Pirelli, and Cooper are all examples of manufacturing companies that would be classified into the “Plastics and rubber products manufacturing” subsector.

 

Using NAICS, the federal government can provide data to the American people about tire manufacturing in the US. 

 

Selected Statistics from the 2007 Economic Census
326211 : Tire manufacturing (except retreading)

2007 NAICS code
and description


Number of establishments

Sales,
shipments,
receipts ($1,000)


Annual payroll ($1,000)

Number of
employees

 

31-33

Manufacturing

293,919

5,339,345,058

612,474,100

13,333,390

 

326

Plastics and rubber products manufacturing

13,615

211,048,378

33,117,587

853,960

 

326211

Tire manufacturing (except retreading)

137

16,896,094

2,820,515

49,759

 

 

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2007 Economic Census

 

  
 

Subject Guide

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Mohammad Mirfakhrai
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