SFU Library blog, BUEC Buzz, with colourful banner showing students

A current awareness resource for students & faculty members in Business & Economics

Data Sources for BUS 430

Published by Mark Bodnar

I understand that our BUS 430 students (Cross-Cultural Management) are going to be looking for some secondary data sources to test various hypotheses. I thought I'd list a few of my favourite sources that might fit their needs.  

In no particular order, my recommendations are... 


Access company fundamentals (balance sheet data, income statement data, etc.) and more for a huge range of companies. Start by going to Compustat > Global Compustat.  Note that you will need to use your usual SFU username and password to access the database, then you will need to enter your SFU email once you are within WRDS.


Information on over 64,000 publicly-traded companies and 148 million private companies from around the world. As well as descriptive information and company financials, ORBIS contains further detail such as news, market research, ratings and country reports, scanned reports, ownership, and brief M&A data.


Social science data files on a wide range of topics and countries. Most have downloadable data as well as codebooks and other documentation.  Start by browsing their international datasets.


Economic data from the US Federal Reserve. Many international time series are included.  Free and downloadable!  Start by browsing the categories or by going straight to their international data.

5. Passport GMID

Passport is better known around here for its data and reports on sales of "fast moving consumer goods", but it also provides a lot of economic and demographic data for every country in the world.  Start by going to Search (top left corner), then Menu Search, and browse the Category Tree to get a feeling for the sorts of information available.

6. ThomsonOne-Investment Banking

Note: You must use Internet Explorer for this database.  Database covering publicly-traded companies around the world. Has advanced screening options and included data on things like M&A activity.  Start by going to the Screening & Analysis option along the top bar.  

7. World Development Indicators

Over 600 development indicators including economic, social, environmental, business, and technology for more than 208 countries. 

8. IMD World Competitiveness Online

Measures the competitiveness of nations, ranking and analyzing how a nation's environment creates and sustains the competitiveness of enterprises. It is based on time series data from the IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook, published since 1989. Sixty countries are measured on the basis of 333 criteria. Any combination of criteria can be searched for the past 18 years. 

9. UNCTADstat

Incredibly detailed data on trade, investment, and development by and between nations. Tricky to use effectively!

10. IMF Data

This resource become free earlier this year. Includes International Financial Statistics, Direction of Trade data, and much more.

11. International Historical Statistics

Go here if you need deeply historical data -- ranging from 1750 to 2010.

If you're in BUS 430 this term, check back here in a few days in case I've added more resources. (Sometimes more sources come to mind after I've had a chance to think a bit longer... )

Bonus resource #1: Socialogue reports via IPSOS News Centre

The public-opinion polling company, IPSOS, did a series of international polls on a range of social media and other topics.  The results are available under Socialogue on the left side within the database. When you click on one of the news stories that resulted from the polls, you should also see an option to view Detailed Tables.  Those tables have a country-by-country breakdown of the responses to each question, often with analysis of the results by age, income, gender, etc.  It's a bit of a hit-or-miss source, but worth a shot.

Bonus #2: Check my International Market Research guide, esp. section 1.1.2 and section  4.1.2 for further sources and guides.


This is just my initial list off the top of my head.  If you don't find what you're looking for, come into the library and check with my colleagues.

Good luck with your research!



Mark Bodnar

Business Librarian