Industry Research and Resources

Census Bureau Economic Programs

The U.S. Census Bureau pulls together its statistical resources on businesses and industries. Find, for example, the current economic indicator, charts reporting sales in various industries, e-commerce statistics, County Business Patterns, Statistics of U.S. Businesses, foreign trade statistics, manufacturing, mining, and construction statistics, and more.

CROSS (Customs Rulings Online Search System)

The U.S. Customs Service provides this database of selected rulings that span the years 1989 to present. While not all rulings currently reside in the database, the Customs Service plans to include all rulings at some future date. The database supports Boolean, including the NEAR operator. Enter a tariff number or legal citation as a keyword or phrase. Enclose phrases in quotation marks. The database also provides tariff classifications (e.g., search wine to find rulings and the classification under each ruling).

Current Industrial Reports

The U.S. Census Bureau publishes monthly, quarterly, and annual measures of industrial activity. "The data are used to satisfy economic policy needs and for market analysis, forecasting, and decision-making in the private sector. These surveys measure manufacturing activity in important commodity areas such as textiles and apparel, chemicals, primary metals, computer and electronic components, industrial equipment, aerospace equipment, and consumer goods."

Deloitte Research

Find market research reports (in PDF) by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu. Topics or industries covered include consumer business, economics, energy, financial services, life sand health care, manufacturing, the public sector, strategic flexibility, strategy/cross-industry, and technology, media and telecommunications. The reports are free. You can also sign up to receive Deloitte Research Alerts -- e-mail notices about newly published articles, points-of-view, white papers and in-depth research reports.

FDIC Bank Data

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) offers databases containing information about individual banks and the banking industry. Find the status of insured depository institutions, their financial condition and their condition relative to other institutions. Specific databases include the Institution Directory, Call and Thrift Financial Reports, FDIC/OTS Summary of Deposits, Deposit Market Share Report, Trust Institutions Information, Bank and Thrift Rating Services for Consumers, Uniform Bank Performance Reports (UBPR), FDIC Enforcement Decisions and Orders, Final Orders from the Board of Directors, Merger Decisions, FDIC Failed Financial Institution Information and Reports of Changes to Financial Institutions and Offices. Also find applications for profiling the banking industry and analyzing national and regional trends, summaries of financial data and historical studies.



A project of the California Institute for Telecommunications & Information Technology, GreenScanner lets you look up consumer opinions about products. Search by UPC to find, or offer, an opinion about a product. The focus and intent of the resource is on the environmental friendliness of products.

Industry Data Finder

The Cole Library, Rensselaer at Hartford offers a useful research guide and annotated collection of links to industry resources. It covers major industries -- automotive, banking, construction, food, paper, and more -- and provides the corresponding SIC and NAICS codes, industry profiles, financials and statistics, forecasts, news, hot issues, trade associations, trade publications, as well as regulating government agencies and major companies in the industry.

Industry Research Desk

Polson Enterprises offers researchers an annotated collection of industry resources. Those looking to hire research assistance may also find help here.

Industry Specific Business Guides

The staff of the Small Business Development Centers of the University of Missouri prepare reports covering industries where small businesses account for much of the activity. There are two types of reports -- Industry-at-a-Glance and Business Profiles. Both are designed to help in business planning. Industry-at-a-Glance reports summarize markets, trends, opportunities and challenges. Business Profiles discuss required licenses, legal structure, hiring employees, tax requirements, and include general and specific business resources

InfoTech Trends

A quote from the site: "InfoTech Trends provides market research data on all aspects of the information technology industry - computers, peripherals, software, storage, the Internet, communications, and more. Our database contains information on forecast sales and forecast shipments, market share, trend analysis, and other frequently used market statistics."

For free, researchers can obtain data from previous financial quarters (typically, 2000 and 1999). For a per minute fee or by subscription, the site offers current data. In seeking information about the DSL market, for example, I found a second quarter 2000 cite to the journal, TELE.COM, which provides a forecast market share of Internet access by type.

ITDS Industry Profiles

The International Trade Data System offers concise profiles of various industries, which include current concerns, trends, legislation, statistics, and additional resources.

MacRae's Blue Book

Published since 1893, this buyer's guide provides information about the products of 120,000 industrial companies. Search by company or product keyword to find names of matching businesses, their city and state/province, phone number and brief business description. You can also limit queries to whole words (no truncation) or to a U.S. or Canadian location. Click "more" after abbreviated initial entries to find fax numbers, street addresses, type of business activity, business contacts, Web site and more.

Kalorama Information, LLC, publisher and distributor of market research reports, offers a search interface to its studies as well as to Findex and MarketLooks. MarketLooks provides brief (10 to 15 pages) analyses of industries. Findex, by FIND/SVP, is a database of abstracted industry reports by FIND/SVP.

Search by keyword. Keywords may encompass company names.

Researchers receive abstracts free of charge and may order full-text reports via the site. Accessing Findex summaries requires a paid subscription, but visitors may search it free of charge.

MNI Leads

Manufacturers News, Inc. offers a database (formerly, MNI Database) of sales leads. Search by geographic location, industry, or company size to find profiles of sales prospects. The database previously gave away basic contact information for free. Now a commercial source, it reveals the number search results and the cost of downloading them.

North American Industry Classification System (NAICS)

This classification system replaces the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) System.

PriceMiner, an e-commerce hosting service for dealers in antiques and collectibles, powers this search tool, which provides pricing data collected from eBay, and You can search by a variety of criteria, including keywords, data channels (PriceMiner inventory), inventory category, sales date or sales type (Sold Items or Unsold Items). In addition to providing historical price data, PriceMiner performs an analysis, which reveals the average price, the number of items included in the average, the price range, and an estimate based on today's market conditions with a confidence factor. Access requires a paid subscription.

Price's List of Lists

Gary Price offers this excellent compilation of resources that rank companies, people, or other groups.


Rocket Technologies offers a public search engine and desktop utility for finding current news about companies and industries. The public search engine enables single keyword or phrase searching. Use it to find business-related news and articles published during the current or past five days. The desktop utility offers greater search capability as well as the ability to store queries. It also enables browsing RSS news feeds and Weblogs.

Search for Magazine Web Sites

Gebbie Press, publisher of The All-In-One Media Directory, provides an index of trade and industry journals on the Web. Search for magazines by keyword or title; or browse the subject categories. The search engine did not work well during our visit.

Standard Industrial Classification Manual

The Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) offers this search interface to the 1987 edition of the SIC Manual.

Thomas Global

The Thomas Global (previously Thomas Global Register Europe) is a directory of 700,000 manufacturers and distributors from countries in Asia, Europe and North America. It provides basic information about manufacturers, including the company name, address, phone, fax, number of employees, year established and product type.


Powered by ThomasRegister and ThomasRegional, ThomasNet provides information for both industrial suppliers and buyers. You may find information about U.S. and Canadian companies and their brands. The site enables searching by company name, product or service, or brand name. It provides business contact information, Web site, brief business description, number of employees, year founded, export markets, import markets, and more. Please note the new domain.


Discover basic company information, annual sales, number of employees, ownership type, and more. Other features at the site enable the creation of lists for marketing purposes. For example, I created a list of psychiatric hospitals located in the Denver and Salt Lake City metropolitan areas. Also create reports by industry. These include market size statistics, market analysis by company size, by state, by metro area, or by specialty.

Salary Information - US Businesses (
Launched as a public beta on 11 June 2008, the site promises to deliver "reviews, ratings and salary details about specific jobs for specific employers." While access to the information requires registration, it is free. The catch? To join, you must provide a review or salary information for a current or past employer. The type information you will find includes the company name, top executive, its industry, employee size, revenue, Web site address, reviews and salary reports. You may also search salaries or reviews by keyword.

North American Industry Classification System (NAICS)
This classification system replaces the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) System.