Have Questions? We Have Answers! Lippincott’s Business FAQ

Magnifying glass enlarging the words "Frequently Asked Questions"

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.

Business FAQ keyword search for bond

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 answer to the question "How do I find data on total returns for stocks, bonds, and indexes?"

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:

Business FAQ Submit Your Question button

Fun facts about Lippincott’s Business FAQ:

The most popular question is “How do I find analyst reports (investment bank research)?” followed by “Where can I screen for companies by IPO date, and how do I find the IPO date of a specific company?” and “Where can I find credit and bond ratings for a particular company?

The Business FAQ includes resource access questions such as “How can I access Bloomberg?” and “Why am I having difficulty using Thomson ONE?

Answers often include both subscription and publicly available resources. For example, see answers to “How do I find data on consumer demographics and buying behavior?” and “Where can I find economic, industry, and country forecasts worldwide?

There are even FAQs intended for specific audiences. For example, “How may I use the library’s resources for classes or projects that involve working with an external client?” and “As an alumnus, which online business resources am I able to access when I visit the library?

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!

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.

Top 10 Resources for MBAs

The librarians at the Lippincott Library are excited to have new MBAs on campus. We’ve put together a listing of 10 resources/services available through the library that we think you should know about.
1. Wall Street Journal – The library has full-text access to the newspaper through a number of our subscription databases (just not through WSJ.com). You can browse the latest 2 weeks of the newspaper in Factiva.  Other places to find the Wall Street Journal can be found here.  You can also access The Economist, and other news sources.

docdel00012. Document Delivery – MBAs have access to a special delivery service for articles and book chapters. Send citations of interest to docdel@wharton.upenn.edu and we will scan or download the items you need & send them to you via email. This service was previously only available to faculty and PhDs but we’ve opened it up to MBAs – saving you both the time and headache of searching for the full-text.

Business Databases3. Subscriptions to 100+ business specific databases. Some highlights include databases that cover market and industry reports as well as financial resources used in the industry like Bloomberg, Factset, SDC, and many more.

4. Wharton MBAs have remote access to S&P Capital IQ through MBA Career Management – click on “Students”, then select “Research Tools”. Remote access will become available at the start of the Fall Term. Capital IQ is also available in the Lippincott Library for students with a Wharton login account.

5. Business FAQ – Provides quick reference help on a wide range of questions relating to business research. The FAQ is a knowledge base consisting of 15 broad categories (e.g. “Finance”) and more than 600 specific questions (e.g. “How do I find Info on Venture Capital and Private Equity?“). Take a look at our recent blog post, Just the FAQs, to learn more.

Guides6. Research Guides – Helpful guides put together by subject specialists at the Lippincott Library. The guides cover industries, geographies, and other business topics. Each guide includes links to subscription databases, journals, books, and other helpful resources that relate to the guide’s topic. Research Guides are a good starting point if you are new to a topic or just beginning your research.

4557vitale7. Group Study Rooms – The library has study spaces that you can reserve for groups of 4 to 12 people for up to two hours a day. We hope that when you are not collaborating in 2401 Walnut, you know that you have a place to meet with your group in Lippincott.

Research To Go8. Research To Go is one of the many ways that you can contact the librarians at the Lippincott Library. From 12:30pm to 1:30pm, Monday through Thursday, you can find a librarian in JMHH 251. Drop in for a reference consultation, no appointment is needed. Please feel free to interrupt us!

Bloomberg1019. Financial Database Instruction – Over the course of the school year, the Lippincott Library will be offering a variety of 1-hour classes covering topics like financial databases (Bloomberg & Capital IQ), Entrepreneurial Research, and Business Research Strategies. Database instruction will be hosted in the newest space in Lippincott, the Yablon Financial Resources Lab, when it’s completed at the start of the Fall Semester. A full listing of offerings will be available on the website.

Librarians10. Last but definitely not least, get research assistance from one of Lippincott’s six Business Research Librarians. There are lots of ways to contact us and we hope that you do. We will gladly help you get started with your research and projects!

Visiting Lippincott Library  You can access most of our electronic databases remotely, all you need is your Pennkey ID and password. However, there are some perks to visiting the library.

  • What do textbooks, laptop locks, and headphones all have in common? You can check-out these items from the Lippincott Library Reserve Desk for three hours at a time for use within the library.
  • With your Wharton ID and password you can log into computers that have the same image as the computers in Huntsman Hall. This allows you to do the same work you do in Huntsman, but in the library.
  • Access a number of specialized financial databases like Bloomberg, Capital IQ, Factset, SDC, Datastream, Morningstar Direct and Prowess.
  • Wharton printer – You can print in the library using your Wharton print account.
  • Scanner – Scan documents for free directly to your USB or email.
  • And, of course, in-person research assistance from the Lippincott Librarians. Come visit us at the Reference Desk.

Just the FAQs Ma’am: Lippincott’s Knowledge Database

Penn’s Business FAQ provides quick reference help on a wide range of questions relating to business research. The FAQ is a knowledge database consisting of 15 broad categories (e.g. “Finance”) and more than 600 specific questions (e.g. “How do I find Info on Venture Capital and Private Equity?“) plus several thousand keywords and links that can be used for retrieval.

The system allows searching for keywords, phrases, and words in combination. The specific questions and sources in the database reflect librarians’ experience in responding to the questions of Wharton students and faculty, and feedback from the database itself. The database was queried more than 68,000 times in the past year. The Business FAQ can be searched from Business FAQ search box on Lippincott’s Home Page or by typing keywords and phrases in the FindIt searchbox at the top of any Penn Libraries home page.

Here is a list of the question categories:


And a sample Q&A Continue reading

Coding Games – Finding Information for U.S. Micro-Industries

Industries are groups of companies in the same line of business. Points of interest in industry research include financial trends, industry profiles, current and projected environment, major companies and their market share.

NAICS (North American Industrial Classification System) is the standard coding system for defining North American industries. NAICS is a powerful indexing tool used by hundreds of government and commercial databases. It groups natural language industry descriptions into one through six digit hierarchical codes that often allow you to retrieve just the data you want for a specific industry configuration.

But NAICS has its limits. Small or very new industries may not have specific codes. Looking for information about the U.S. Dating Services Industry, for example, will turn up the NAICS code:

81299    “Other Personal Care Services”.

The “9” at the end of the code is a tip-off that this category is for “Not Elsewhere Classified” industries within the larger group of personal care services. In this case, it includes a hodge-podge of services. In addition to dating services, it applies to services including “ear piercing”, “tanning salons”, “tattooing” and “shoe shining”. Continue reading

Simmons Says – Analyzing Consumer Marketing Variables

What magazines are most heavily read by women who have bought GAP jeans recently? What are the favorite TV programs for men under 30 who drink Redbull? Gap redbull logoThe answer to such detailed questions on the relationship among product and brand usage, spending behavior, media habits and demographic factors require a database that allows us to cross classify variables.

One such database is Simmons OneView, which provides U.S. adult consumer information on product and brand usage, spending behavior, and media habits. It can be used to create multi-level crosstabulations analyzing the demographic and psychographic characteristics of product users and their media behavior. The data comes from the Simmons National Consumer Study (NCS), which is sent out to samples of the U.S. population several times a year. Simmons also conducts a National Hispanic Consumer Study (NHCS), which includes the same data as the NCS but asks additional questions of Hispanics.

The database has several thousand variables including lifestyle information, detailed demographics, media habits, brand purchases and consumption. The crosstab function is simple and flexible. Continue reading

Gimmie that Old Time Financial Statement: Annual Reports to Shareholders

Company annual reports provide stock owners and potential investors with information about company performance and plans. US Company Annual Reports have much more flexibility in format and content than do the annual 10K reports that are required by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.  10K reports, on the other hand, offer much more detailed information on company history, company description, and financial data.

Annual reports are not always easy to find on the Internet, take Ford’s 2001 Annual Report to Shareholders (ARS) as an example. Try a Google search for Ford 2001 annual report. Unless you want a report on Henry Ford Elementary School, this search is not successful. Ford’s website looks promising, but the archive only goes back to 2002. If we search the SEC filings, we’ll find that the ARS wasn’t filed with them at all (only required to file 10-K). This isn’t the end of our search. The Penn Libraries subscribe to a number of databases that cover annual reports, both current and historical. Keep reading to find out where we can find Ford’s 2001 ARS. Continue reading

Put Your Wallet Away: The Library has the Wall Street Journal

Have you heard that the Wall Street Journal is available to students online, but can’t seem to find Penn’s subscription on the WSJ website?

Wall Stree Journal Logo

You are not alone. The Lippincott Library has full-text access to the newspaper, but not through WSJ online. You can access the newspaper through several of our subscription databases.  Below is an outline of the many places you can find the Wall Street Journal, both current and historical.


Dow Jones Factiva is a key source for news information, covering 35,000+ full-text newspapers and magazines, including key papers like the New York Times and Wall Street Journal.  Coverage of the WSJ in this database goes back to 1984. You can both browse the newspaper in this database as well as search for specific articles. Continue reading

Introducing Datapoints

We are pleased to announce the launch of Datapoints, a blog of the Lippincott Library, the Wharton School Library.

Datapoints will highlight the many digital resources of the Lippincott Library by examining the business research questions that we have found intriguing, challenging, strange, esoteric, or puzzling. We see Datapoints as providing a level of information detail midway between the broad outlines of our Research Guides (with subjects from Accounting to Venture Capital) and the details of our Business FAQ.

We hope that you will allow us to alert you to new blog posts by email. We look forward to your comments.

-Lippincott Business Librarians