Election 2016: By the Ad$pend


There are several Lippincott Library resources that contain advertising expenditure data, but only one that tracks it at the advertiser/brand/product level, by media, by market. That is AdSpender, from Kantar Media. AdSpender allows you to find out how much advertising is being done (in dollar amounts, or by units aka number of ads) over time. Our subscription includes a rolling 5-year period. One great way to use this during this election cycle is to track presidential campaign ad spending, down to the city level. This way we can see in which states the candidates’ campaigns feel the race is close and want to spend more, and in which states they feel confident in their winning Electoral College votes – a great indicator of where political advertising dollars will be spent.

createOnce you enter into AdSpender, use the Custom Reports menu on the left to click Create. First, you’ll be able to select from a large menu of Available Media – including Network TV, Cable TV, National Newspapers, Network Radio, Internet Display, and even Outdoor (such as billboards). Select all or as many media formats as you’d like to track and move them to the Selected Media menu. Or, click on the Media tab to select certain Designated Market Areas (DMAs) of interest. Then click the Next link in the top right (how you’ll navigate through all steps of this process).

Now we can choose the time period that we’d like to have measured. To check the date range coverage of the media format that you are interested in, click on Availability in the top right corner. Remember that our coverage is on a rolling 5-year basis. You also havetimeperiods the choice of viewing the data as one large aggregated sum (Time Period-Single) or at a monthly/quarterly level (click on the Select Multiple Time Periods button).

The next step is to choose what AdSpender calls our Product Set. This is the company or advertiser or brand or product that you want to learn more about. We can search Advertiser names like Clinton For President or Trump For President to find their presidential campaign advertising. Double-click the correct result productset– it will
italicize when it
has been properly added to your report.


Step 4 is where it gets fun, because we can customize our report format to the detailed level we’d like to see. So, for reportformatexample, I can break out my columns first by Media, then by Product, then by Market, then by Time Period. So I’ll be able to see, for each campaign, the spending on each media format then sorted into the DMAs that saw this coverage, then see the trend over time. Set any addition Report Format (e.g. to show both Dollars and Units) and Report Options you’d like (e.g. font and shading preferences), then set a title and hit Run Report.title




The Report Viewer menu shows you all of the recently created reports within Penn’s subscription. The report will move through stages here – Submitted, Running, Completed. This can sometimes take a few minutes. One refreshtrick if you’ve noticed that your report is taking longer than you’d like is to hit the Refresh Listing link, which will manually refresh the menu rather than waiting for it to auto-refresh. Then you’ll be able to view/download the report, in both PDF and .csv formats.


And for more about political advertising, including how to find an archive of the ads and their creative content, use our Business FAQ: “How can I track political ads and spending?

Welcome to Lippincott Library Fall 2016

Welcome to the Fall 2016 semester and the Lippincott Library!!    The Lippincott Library supports the academic and research needs of the Wharton School.  Visit our website, contact us, chat with us, email lippinco@wharton.upenn.edu or stop by and see us.

Here’s a few tips to help get you started.


X marks the spot!!  Lippincott is located at 3420 Walnut Street.  Just look for the statue of “Broken Button“, located on Locust Walk at the entrance to the Van Pelt Library Building.  Lippincott is located on the 2nd floor, west wing of the building.

Use our Lippincott Services Guide to learn about all of our services.


The Yablon Financial Resources Lab, located at the library, includes Bloomberg and Capital IQ terminals.  This space is available to Wharton students only whenever the building is open.





Read  Datapoints, Lippincott’s blog,  to find out about business databases including content coverage and search tips. Posts also cover Workshops, such as Bloomberg 101 and other Library happenings.


Search the Business FAQ to locate the best resources to answer your research question.





Follow us on Twitter@LippincottLib




Book our group study rooms to practice presentations, hold meetings, and create content as a group.  These include 4 small study spaces, 2 group meeting rooms and a larger Seminar Room.

Join friends for a snack in Mark’s Café




Make use of all of the equipment and programs available at the Weigle Information Commons .



Sign up for workshops including Bloomberg 101, Entrepreneurship,  and Job Interview Prep.

LibAnswers Turns One

LibAnswers is an FAQ/Knowledge database platform that has been in use by the Penn Libraries for the past year. The questions and answers in the FAQ database are supplied by Penn Librarians familiar with the typical queries of students, faculty and staff. The Business FAQ, Instant Answers, replaces a decade-old FAQ interface that was developed by Penn’s Library Technology Services.

The Business FAQ questions in Instant Answers  range from the routine (“Where can I find the Wall Street Journal”) to the specialized (“How do I Construct a Currency Futures Contract on Bloomberg”). In the past year, business FAQs were viewed 10,000 times.
To see how the FAQ works:

FAQ Screen1



From Lippincott’s home page  type a question or a series of key words in the search box (located on the upper right of the screen) and click on ‘ASK”.   Then click on any appropriate FAQ retrieved.




Answers typically provide definitions and a variety of links to sources.

FAQ Screen2

When a questions is broad or complex, links are often provided to a Library Guide or to a Blog post that treats the topic in depth and which provides the name of a Library subject specialist.

Here, for example, is a Guide to Health Care which was linked from a FAQ on the subject. Notice that the Guide also includes an FAQ “widget” that will allow you explore further.

FAQ Screen3

The distribution of FAQ questions and the number of views follows a typical 80/20 pattern; about 80% of the FAQs viewed are from 20% of the FAQs in the database. (See this article
for a discussion of the 80/20 distribution)
TAB FAQ Cum percentage graph for blog


The 80/20 ratio implies that about 64% of the views will come from 4% of the FAQs, but the actual distribution is 64 to 1; that is, 64% of the views come from 1% of the FAQs. The single most heavily viewed FAQ (“Where can I find Analyst Reports?”) was viewed more than 2,700 times in the past year, about 28% of all business related FAQ views.


The word cloud below shows the relative importance of the FAQ questions.


FAQ screen 4



The FAQ is just one way the Library can help you with your research. Here are some additional options.

I Graduated!! Can I use the Library Databases?

Congratulations to the Class of 2016!!!

“Why can’t I get access to the Library’s databases?” is the perennial question of the recent Penn graduate.


Unfortunately, the library’s subscription databases are only available to current students, faculty, and staff members of the University of Pennsylvania. Once the school switches a student’s status from student to alumni – usually mid-August – access to the Library’s electronic resources ends. Below is a summary of the Penn Libraries resources that you can access as an alumni, both remotely and on-campus. We also have a few tips for finding business resources at your local public library or on the Web.

Alumni Services provides information on visiting the Library, Library Events and E-resources that are accessible remotely using your PennKey information.

Alumni also have access to some business databases on campus as shown in this list: Alumni Business Database Access on Campus.

Other options for Alumni include the local public library.  Many public libraries provide access to selected databases for members.  Check your library to find out what is available to you.   New York City’s Science Industry and Business Library, (SIBL) rivals many college libraries. The Free Library of Philadelphia also has a large collection of business resources.

There are also many useful freely available web resources.  Here are a few tips on locating and finding reliable information.  First, check our Library Research Guides.  Many guides include web sites carefully vetted by subject Librarians.


Many Universities, such as Penn, provide Scholarly Commons where research by faculty and students are readily available.

Use Google filters.  For instance, when you are researching topics such as foreign trade or exporting, limit your search to government sites.  To search for trade regulations in Brazil, use this search:


You will retrieve resources about trade with Brazil from U.S. government sites only.

To search for information from associations or organizations use the filter SITE:.ORG.  Many organizations such as the World Bank provide free information. One great resource from the World Bank is the annual “Doing Business In survey of the ease of doing business in countries across the Globe.  The World Bank also provides detailed information on each country including business regulations and historical macroeconomic data.

Google Scholar contains many scholarly publications from around the world.  Many are accessible via the web.  This can also be used as a way to build a bibliography that can be used at the local library.

google scholar






The Library of Congress lists many resources, print and online in the Business Reference Services website.  Check out the Bibliographies & Guides as well as recommended Internet Resources.

Large consulting companies often provide free reports. PricewaterhouseCoopers provides industry overviews and research and insights.  Real estate firms such as CBRE provide quarterly international market research reports.

An easy way to access government data is through American Factfinder.  Select your topic of interest such as demographics, economics or housing.


FRED, the Federal Reserve Bank, St. Louis, is another depository of economic statistics and research.  This covers a range of countries as well as the United States.

The Thomas Register is the largest directory of suppliers in the the U.S.  Many companies include brochures.taking-your-biz-to-the-top2


The Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank providing information about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America.

Financial Data is also accessible on the web.  Yahoo Finance and Bloomberg provide data on stocks, bonds and other financial instruments as well as providing current news.






Edgar provides free access to company filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).  It also includes information about the usage for various filings.

This is a sampling of sites that are available on the web.  Good luck going forward!!

For more detailed information about the Library’s business databases available to alums, please look at our blog post Library Database Access for Penn Alumni.




Bloomberg FX functions part 2: Charting features

In addition to the basic FX functions reviewed in our post on Bloomberg FX functions, Bloomberg also offers its robust charting features for FX functions. These functions are great if you would like a more visual representation of the FX data than the tables provided in the basic functions. Below, we have detailed five different charting functions that are particularly useful for generating charts for FX functions.

Most charting screens are divided into three areas – the control area at the top, the side panel, and the chart itself. The control area and side panel allow you to edit the chart information and add items to the display, such as news events or other additional studies or scenarios.

Line chart


The GP function produces a line chart that is excellent for visualizing trends for a specific currency pair over time. The default view is one year for the selected currency pair (ex: EURUSD [CURNCY] GP [GO]) If you just type in [CURNCY] GP [GO] the system will automatically default to the last currency pair you were looking at in any currency function.

The line graph displays trading information, as well as an adjustable line chart showing you the historical price information at a glance. The default display is one year of last price information, but you can also choose to display information for the last day or month, year-to-date, along with several other pre-selected options or a custom range. You can also display ask price, bid price, or inverse market price as opposed to the last price. Graphs and their accompanying data cannot be exported to Excel, but can be exported as an image or vector by clicking on Actions. Also, under actions, can view pricing info as a chart. You can also overlay additional currencies by clicking on “Security/Study”, or mark specific events, such as major news affecting one of the countries or regions, by clicking on “Event.” Custom charts can also be saved for future use.

GIP – Line chart for intraday pricing

GIP is another line chart that provides the ability to visualize trends for a currency, specifically for viewing intraday pricing over time. Where the GP only lets you see the last price (or ask price, bid price, etc.) by day, the GIP function let’s you view a currency’s intraday pricing over time up for up to 240 days in the past for a time series alanaysis that allows you to examine security performance.


GPC – Candle Chart

GPC displays the candle chart view of the GP (line chart for pricing) function. You can use this to examine trends in intraday pricing over longer periods of time than you can in the regular GP function. This function can be accessed by typing GPC [GO] or select “candle” from the control area in the regular GP function.





GPO -Bar Chart

GPO is a bar chart that, similar to the candle chart, allows you to examine trends in intraday pricing over longer periods of time. This function can be accessed by typing GPO [GO] or select “bar” from the control area in the regular GP function.


Document Delivery now available to Wharton undergraduate students!

Attention,Wharton undergraduates!    Did you know that we recently made one of our most 3-11-2016 4-40-13 PMpopular services for faculty, PhDs, and MBAs available to you? That’s right, you are now able to take advantage of our Document Delivery service! If you need an article or book chapter for your research, we will assist you in obtaining it.  We’ll scan and send PDFs to you via email. Note that we cannot supply course material, including bulkpack items or chapters from textbooks, but we can scan chapters of non-textbook print items that we have in our collection. (Please keep in mind that we must adhere to US copyright laws, including Fair Use, so there may be limits the amount that we can scan from within a single journal issue or book.)

Send an email to docdel@wharton.upenn.edu with the article’s citation  information to get started!

Introduction to Bloomberg FX Functions

If you are interested in foreign exchange rates or other information on world currencies, Bloomberg is an excellent resource for that data. In this blog post, we will go over some of the basic FX functions that are available in Bloomberg.

To get started, hit the yellow [CURNCY] market sector key, and then hit the green [GO] key. This will display a menu of the main currency functions, giving you an overview of some of the options available to you when you are looking for currency and FX data.

One of the main FX functions is FXIP, the FX information portal.

1 - FXIP Screenshot

If you type in FXIP [GO], you will be taken to the FX markets overview screen. FXIP gives you a detailed overview of FX information, enabling you to get a quick snapshot of pricing information for various currency baskets. This is a great starting point for FX overview information before navigating to different screens for more detailed information, some of which are detailed below. The default currency for the FXIP screen is USD, but you are able to change that by typing in a different base currency at the amber box near the top of the screen. You can click on the different gray tabs for additional market overview information.

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What’s Your Company’s RQ™ (Research Quotient)?

Research and Development (R&D) expenditure is the amount of money a company spends on developing new products and services each year.  Academic business researchers have intensively investigated the relationship between a company’s R&D and its market value, and have searched for ways to derive a firm’s optimal R&D spending.  A recent innovation in the analysis and measurement of a firm’s R&D has been the development of the concept of Research Quotient (RQ).

A company’s Research Quotient is the percentage increase in the company’s revenue from a 1% increase in its R&D. RQ is a measure of a firm’s ability to generate revenue from its R&D expenditures.  RQ is calculated from a formula that combines a company’s measure of capital, labor and R&D. For more details concerning RQ calculation, click on Manuals and Overviews from the WRDS Research Quotient database.

RQ can be used:

  • To Link R&D spending to firm growth
  • Link R&D spending to market value
  • Derive a firm’s optimal R&D spending

The WRDS RQ database includes RQ measures for all companies in the COMPUSTAT database that report R&D expenditures. The data covers 1972 to 2010 and is updated annually.  The file allows searching by 4 digit SIC and by GV Key (COMPUSTAT’s unique company identifier).

Table 1 is an example of the output showing some of the default variables.


  • “Raw RQ” is the “Research Quotient” that identifies the ability of a firm to generate revenue from its R&D expenditures. The higher the RQ the greater the revenue generated.
  • “RSTAR” is a calculation of optimal R&D expenditure.
  • “RD Ratio” is the ratio of R&D expenditure to Revenue.

In Table 2, for clarification, I have supplied tickers and names of companies together with a measure of “RQ” that I calculated from the “Raw RQ” supplied by WRDS. This RQ is analogous to the human IQ measure with a mean of 100 and a standard deviation of 15. An RQ with a mean of 100 is often used by academic writers as a way of making the RQ measure more intuitive.

Table 2 ranks the first 20 companies in the U.S. by their RQ in 2010.


There are more than 260 four digit SIC codes represented in the 2010 files, but only 10 codes have more than 35 companies. Table 3 collapses the codes into 2 digits, and ranks the average RQ of the largest 15 industry groups.


About 78% of the companies in the 2010 file were based in the U.S.  Figure 1 graphs the countries with 3 or more companies in 2010 by average R&D expenditures and average RQ.


The principal developer of the RQ concept is Anne Marie Knott, Professor of Business at Washington University, St. Louis. In a 2012 article in Harvard Business Review, she estimateds that if the 20 largest US firms had optimized their R&D expenditure in 2010, they would increase their aggregate market capitalization by $1 trillion. (Knott, Anne Marie. “The Trillion-Dollar R&D Fix.” Harvard Business Review (90:5) 2012, pp. 76-82.) This article can be accessed using Business Source Complete.

What did they say? Resources for transcripts and audios of Earnings Calls.

Earnings calls are conference calls or webcasts at which a public company’s management team discusses the company’s financial performance from the previous reporting period (usually a quarter). Participants include investors, financial analysts, and others, including shareholders. Reading transcripts from these earnings calls and listening to audio recordings can be a great way to glean information about a company’s performance and plans for its future directly from the company leaders themselves.


While archival transcripts of calls can be easy to find, audio broadcasts of earnings calls can sometimes be more challenging to find. Often, companies will only make them available for a limited amount of time following the actual earnings call. If you wish to listen to the broadcast, you will need to keep track of when a particular company’s earnings calls are and how long they make their broadcasts available after the call. For example, Apple only makes their broadcasts available for two weeks after the call. While archives of audio recordings will not be as extensive as those for the written transcripts, you can often find at least the recordings for the last call or two for a given company.

The Lippincott Library has a number of resources where you can access these materials.

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