There is more than one way to conduct successful research and at times it may seem a little overwhelming. The purpose of this guide is to make your search efforts more effective and (hopefully) save you some time. Here are some resources that you should definitely focus your efforts on. Looking at the assignment, I'd strongly recommend using the databases on the left in the following ways:
ABI/Inform: Search this database and limit results to "Scholarly journals, including peer-reviewed". Reason? You'll want some peer-reviewed journals for your paper. These often provide more in-depth coverage on a topic than a newspaper article (more on articles from the newspaper later). Also, if you're running short on time, you may want to limit the search to full-text only. Why? While I don't recommend waiting until the last minute, narrowing the search to full-text won't get the most complete results but it may save time.
Business Source Complete: It's similar to ABI/Inform. You can narrow your search to "Scholarly (Peer-Reviewed) Journals". ABI/Inform and Business Source Complete are crucial for this assignment.
Mergent: This is a key financial database. Search Mergent by company name. A variety of financial data is available as well as recent company news, competitors, and more. You can also get a specific NAICS (North American Industry Classification System) code for a company. That NAICS code will be at the top of the page after you search & select a specific company.
New York Times and Wall Street Journal: These are two of the leading newspapers in the United States when it comes to locating business information. These are excellent sources for newspaper articles on recent finance related issues.
Nexis Uni: Complete with newspaper articles, this database also offers access to company profiles for large publically traded companies and more.
RMA eStatements: Remember Mergent? Got that NAICS code written down from your Mergent company search? Good. Search RMA eStatements by NAICS code to get industry-wide data. This data can be used to calculate ratios and compare a specific business to the industry as a whole. You can also browse RMA eStatements by industry. Unless you feel really comfortable with the NAICS system, it's probably easier to search for a specific company in Mergent that is part of the industry you're researching (i.e. General Motors for automobile manufacturing). Then take the industry-wide auto manufacturing NAICS code from Mergent (located by searching General Motors) and plug it into RMA eStatements. Yes, it's two steps involving two databases.
S&P NetAdvantage: This is the other key financial database. We're talking company profiles, industry surveys, and tons of data. What does this all mean? This database can give you all sorts of great financial data and industry data that you'll find nowhere else.