The third installment of Research Spotlight, a Datapoints series focusing on research emerging from Wharton that has made use of library resources, focuses on a paper authored by Wharton faculty member Michael Schwert. “Does Borrowing from Banks Cost More than Borrowing from the Market?” was published in The Journal of Finance 75 (2).
As the article title implies, the study analyzes the pricing of private bank loans compared to capital market debt. Professor Schwert used S&P Capital IQ to obtain recent data on the capital structures of the sample firms used in the study. Capital IQ is a leading provider of financial information for both public and private companies with additional coverage of market and industry information, M&A transactions and more.
Product prices are considered numerical gold by researchers and budding entrepreneurs. Typically proprietary, this data often comes at a high cost, an irony not lost on those who seek it. Fortunately, Lippincott Library provides access to several databases that contain product prices:
Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD)
The Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD) is a resource for researching the consumer packaged goods (CPG) marketplace. GNPD focuses on new products in the food, drink, beauty and personal care, home care, health and hygiene, and pet markets in 86 countries. In addition to new products, GNPD includes relaunched, reformulated, and repackaged products and new varieties or extended ranges of existing products.
To access GNPD from the Mintel platform, navigate to the Analytics menu at the top of the page and scroll over Products. From there, perform a basic keyword search or access the Advanced Search tool.
Product records provide Company & Source Details including manufacturer/distributor and name of retail store where the product was purchased, as well as Product Details including product description and positioning claims, package size, and product price at purchase location:
Statista repackages third-party statistics from both publicly available and commercial sources, covering a variety of industries throughout the world. To locate availableprice statisticsfor a particular product, search for the product keyword followed by the word price (e.g. juice price). On the search results page, use the left side menu to filter results as desired, such as by geography.
For example, a keyword search for juice price with Countries & Territories limited to United States includes the following Beverage Digest chart depicting retail prices of juices and juice drinks in the United States from 2012 to 2019 in U.S. dollars per case:
Statista’s charts and graphs include source information, making it easy to locate additional or updated price statistics from publicly available sources. For example, on the following chart depicting the average monthly retail price of orange juice in the United States from 2016 to 2020, the Sources field indicates that the U.S. Department of Agriculture is a source of this data, and the Source link is provided.
Clicking the source URL directs to a page on the USDA website featuring U.S. monthly average retail prices for fresh and processed fruits, including orange juice:
Designed to help purchasing and procurement managers make informed purchasing decisions, ProcurementIQ contains reports covering more than 1,000 indirect products and services in the United States. While reports target a commercial or industrial audience, some include residential focus. Search for a product by name (e.g. smoke detectors) to retrieve a report that includes a Price Environment section featuring a price summary, fundamentals, drivers, trends, forecasts, and more:
GlobalData Medical focuses on the medical device, equipment, and supply industries throughout the world.
From the main menu, select Tools, then in the Medtrics Analysis Tool section, select the desired medical device product to access historical and forecasted Average Selling Prices for specific categories of medical device products across market segments and geographic areas. For example, this chart depicts Average Selling Prices for Laparoscopes in the General Surgery market across multiple countries from 2020 forecasted through 2023:
CEIC is a resource for global macroeconomic data. To access product price statistics from the CEIC landing page, open the Indicator menu and do a keyword search for price. Consumer or retail price statistics are available for a variety of products for countries throughout the world.
The CEIC chart below reflects recent retail prices of white granulated sugar in China:
The data can also be viewed and downloaded as a table:
When your research calls for product prices, start by exploring the databases above and contact a Lippincott Librarian for additional assistance.
Take me out to the ball game, take me out with the crowd!
Except that, with social distancing measures still in place, most of us probably won’t be attending any Major League Baseball games this year. But, the season is still scheduled and Opening Day is quickly approaching. If you want to follow your favorite team and maybe even learn more about your fellow fans, try using Sports Atlas.
Sports Atlas is a new database put out by the publishers of Sports Business Journal, and it collects information about professional sports leagues, their member teams, venues, and sponsorships. You can track your favorite team’s recent deals, and get an idea of its fans and their interests. In this case, let’s investigate our home team here at Penn’s campus, the Philadelphia Phillies.
After perusing the Team Snapshot and quick links, you can view detailed information by tab. View a list of all current sponsored brands with deals with the Phillies organization; sort by # of Deals across all sports or narrow down to those most closely-held with the MLB, or in the geographic region.
Use the Asset Library to put yourself right in Citizens Bank Park, the Phillies’ stadium; view photos, by season, of all of the signage around the ballpark (both virtual/digital and static/print) that can be claimed for brand sponsorships.
The Social Audience tab gives great insight into the fans of the team via their social media followers. Sports Atlas measures how much more likely a Phillies fan is also follow certain brands on social media than the average MLB fan; it comes as no surprise to this Phillies fan that a follower of the team is 20.59 times more likely to follow the Twitter account for Wawa than the average MLB fan.
How does this compare to other teams in the region? Use the Reports tab on the left to find ways that you can explore the Philadelphia, PA market overall.
You’ll first see the top brands and teams/organizations active in the area, then you can navigate to view by brands, the demographics of fans in the area using Census data, and to compare and contrast teams by social data. Here we can see the top four teams in this market — Phillies (MLB), 76ers (NBA), Flyers (NHL), and Eagles (NFL) — and see their fans’ brand affinities as a comparison table. Looks like Wawa’s sponsorship of the 76ers is paying off even more handsomely than it is for the Phillies!
Sports Atlas is fun to explore, sure, but it’s also an important tool for anyone researching sports business management, brand sponsorship & major deals, or audience demographics in the fan market.
Have you tried working with what look like text data in R only to get back a number or an error about comparing or replacing elements? If this sounds familiar, you may have been working with factor data. Read on for more about how to create and handle factor data in R.
Recently, I was trying to help someone get US Gross Domestic Product (GDP) statistics back to 1915. The problem? GDP did not exist as a construct going that far back in time. However, there was a source that came to mind: Global Financial Data (GFD). This database specializes in providing long time series on stocks, bonds, and economic indicators. In the case of GDP for the United States, they have extended it back to 1789. You can use GFD anonymously or you can create a personal account in order to access certain features such as saving workbooks.
Directly from the landing page, you access search options, GFD Power Downloads, and Help.
It is easy to download data or to create graphs to demonstrate a point. Below is a sampling of what GFD has to offer.
Looking for information on the medical device industry? Wondering where to find company financial ratios? Want to find the latest issue of Forbes or The Wall Street Journal? Look no further than Lippincott Library’s Business FAQ for answers to these and many other business research questions.
Accessible from the Lippincott Library home page and the search box on the Penn Libraries home page, the Business FAQ is the perfect starting point for many business research needs. This self-help resource currently includes more than 300 (and counting) questions and answers covering various aspects of business research and more.
Simply type a concept (keyword, phrase in quotes, or combination of words) into the Business FAQ search box on the Lippincott Library home page, click the Ask button, and a list of relevant questions appears. Select the question that fits your needs.
Answers feature hyperlinked resources with content overviews, access instructions, and details about why the resource would be more appropriate for a specific research need.
Business FAQ questions and answers are maintained by Lippincott Librarians based on experience responding to questions from Wharton students and faculty.
If your question is not included in the Business FAQ, the system provides an option to “Submit Your Question” for addition to the FAQ repository:
Original software for the Business FAQ was created and maintained by the Penn Libraries Information Technology and Digital Design Department. Penn shared that software with other academic libraries that were members of the Business FAQ Consortium. Over the years, software platforms changed and now each academic library maintains its own Business FAQ repository.
Next time you have a business research question, consult Lippincott’s Business FAQ for the answer!
The Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD) is a new Lippincott Library resource for researching the consumer packaged goods (CPG) marketplace. GNPD focuses on new products in the food, drink, beauty and personal care, home care, health and hygiene, and pet markets in 86 countries. Mintel has been monitoring products since the 1990s and adds more than 30,000 product launches to GNPD each month. In addition to new products, GNPD includes relaunched, reformulated, and repackaged products and new varieties or extended ranges of existing products. Helpful tip: if a product is purchased by another company, Mintel categorizes this as a “relaunch” and creates a separate GNPD record reflecting the new company’s ownership.
Mintel users may have encountered GNPD content during general searches on the Mintel platform. GNPD data and information appears in Mintel Country and Global reports, under Content Type: Innovative Products, and when using the Product Features filter. Now, users also have the option to search within GNPD exclusively.
To access GNPD from the Mintel platform, navigate to the Analytics menu at the top of the page and scroll over Products. From there, you can perform a basic keyword search, access the Advanced Search tool, research ingredients, and explore CPG trends.
Basic keyword searching provides quick access to new products. Every field in GNPD is keyword-searchable. Search suggestions allow you to drill down by product name, company name, flavor, fragrance, ingredients, and more.
Use the filters on the search results page to focus results on region, product claim, ingredients, company, and more. The “Refine search” free text box allows for keyword searching within results.
Advanced Search allows you to limit a search by multiple filters, many at a detailed level, enabling a refined list of results:
The example below reflects an Advanced Search for the key phrase “ice cream” in the product description, limiting to products containing the ingredient almond milk, and limiting geography to Latin America:
Results can be sorted in several ways, including by geographic Market:
Drilling into a product record yields Product Details including package size, product positioning claims, as well as Company & Source Details including manufacturer, retail store where the product was purchased, and the product price:
Product records also include nutrition facts, packaging information, product variants (when available), and links to GNPD records for similar products:
The Advanced Search function is also accessible from the basic search results page by clicking the “Edit with advanced search” link.
Product records can be downloaded into Microsoft Word, Excel/CSV, PowerPoint, or HTML. Customizable templates are available for Excel and CSV downloads. Product images can be downloaded as JPG files.
GNPD search results can be visualized, charted, and tabulated for trend analysis. Search results may also be shared through a direct link. To save GNPD searches, create a free Mintel personal profile using your Wharton or Penn email address. From a search results page, click “Save search,” name the search, and save it. You can also create email alerts for new products meeting your search criteria.
The GNPD Hopper is similar to the basket feature in Mintel reports. From a search results page, click “Add to Hopper,” then “Create new Hopper.” Name the Hopper, add records to it, and save it. You can also add Hopper comments and share Hoppers. Saved Searches and saved Hoppers are accessible from the Products page under the Analytics menu.
This is merely a brief highlight of how GNPD can streamline research in the CPG sector. To learn more about GNPD’s many tools and features, the Help & Training section accessible from the top right side of the Mintel database includes a Glossary, User Guide, and forthcoming training videos covering basic and advanced searching within GNPD.
This video from Mintel demonstrates popular GNPD features mentioned above:
The Penn Libraries are pleased to announce that access to FT.com is now available to Penn students, faculty and staff. This subscription includes access to the online version of the Financial Times back to 2004, including the daily editions of the ePaper, as well as content exclusive to its online publication. To get started, use this link to set up an account with FT.com using your Penn email address.
FT.com expands access to FT content previously unavailable through library subscriptions to include data graphics, videos, newsletters, podcasts and more. The “Today’s Newspaper (ePaper)” feature enables users to read a digitized version of the daily print publication, including its many international iterations, with options for both on- and off-line use.
Users can also make use of the “myFT” feature via this subscription, which provides options for curating a feed of topics of interest for quick access to relevant articles, saving articles for later use, and subscribing to newsletters from a user-friendly dashboard.
Once you’ve registered, be sure to download the Financial Times app on your iOS or Android device. Login with your email address and password to access all of the same features for when you are on the go.
To read more about how to access the Financial Times through the Penn Libraries, please see our Business FAQ.
Have you found yourself in a maze of confusion while trying to track down an article or book chapter? You are not alone! Fortunately, Wharton faculty, staff, PhD, MBA, and undergraduate students can avoid this frustration by taking advantage of Lippincott Library’s Document Delivery service. If reducing research time and effort sounds appealing, read on to learn more.
Whether you need an article or a chapter from a book, Lippincott’s Document Delivery staff will track down the item and get it to you.
Here are common questions and answers about Document Delivery:
How does Document Delivery obtain the material I request?
We locate the PDF within one of our hundreds of subscription databases or make a scan from a print item in the Penn Libraries’ collections.
What if I need an article or book chapter that is not in Penn Libraries’ collections?
Not a problem! We will request the article or chapter from one of our many partner libraries around the world. You will receive a link to the PDF directly in your email inbox.
What else should I know about the Document Delivery service?
There may be limits to the amount we can scan from a single book or journal issue based on U.S. copyright laws, including Fair Use.
How do I use Document Delivery?
Email the full citation of the article or book chapter to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get to work! Expect to receive PDFs from our subscription databases or scans from items within Penn’s collection within 24 hours. (Note: Document Delivery is staffed Monday through Friday)
Healthy research requires reproducibility, but R works with so many community-sourced packages that tracking each one’s impact can seem daunting. How can you do it? R’s citation function makes citing R libraries simple.