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Thursday, January 08, 2009

Mergent Online

Mergent Online is a subscription database providing financial information on 10,000 U.S. and 20,000 non-U.S. public companies. Many libraries are not familiar with this sophisticated and pricey service. Small libraries are more likely to subscribe to Value Line Investment Survey which compiles single page reports on some 1,700 publicly traded companies. Value Line has a unique system of ranking stocks by summarizing the facts about a company (background on what the company does, past profitability, market-related measures, risk- and volatility-related measures, and projections). Research is all important when buying any stock and Value Line has some great advantages as a starting point.

While Mergent Online does not rank stocks it does go well beyond Value Line by providing key financial information for those working in the investment management field as well as the academic and corporate information fields. Coverage includes history, mergers, acquisitions, disposals, joint ventures, property, long-term debt, bond ratings, capital stock, balance sheets, income statements, cash flow, annual reports, insider trading, ratios and more.

With Mergent Online you can create any number of reports. For instance, you can choose a company (or more than one) and compare that company against the industry as a whole or you could create a competitors report.

Also, if your library has traditionally subscribed to Europa World Yearbook you will appreciate even more the information on foreign countries (and the U.S.) provided by Mergent Online. Each country profile offers detailed organized information and statistics on that country's history, geography, people, government, economy, stock exchange and corporate filing practices.

The Worcester Public Library provides remote access to patrons with a Worcester Public Library card.

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