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How to Cite Your Sources

Citing Business Documents: APA 7

Business research is most often done in APA style. The examples here are taken from the following document, written by business librarians:

Schemm, N., Dellenbach, M., Grisham, Z., Hageman, M., Tingle, N., Trowbridge, M., & Wheatley, A. (2020). APA 7th ed. citation for business sources. https://bit.ly/APA7business

For examples of citations in MLA and Chicago, see the guides listed in the More Help box below.

APA

For the most part, business documents - profiles, annual reports, filings, etc. - fall under the term "grey literature." Every APA citation must include certain attributes, but the specifics of each type of document is where it gets tricky. The following recommended citations are based on interpretation of existing APA standards, adapted for each document type.

The APA Formula: "Who. (When). What. Where."

Example:

Maze, J. (2020, May/June). Game of chicken: Popeyes' sandwich and Chick-fil-A's consistency proved again that America can't get enough chicken. Restaurant Business.

Documents From a Database

Business Source Premier

 
Article

Maze, J. (2020, May/June). Game of chicken: Popeyes' sandwich and Chick-fil-A's consistency proved again that America can't get enough chicken. Restaurant Business.

 
Company profile

MarketLine. (2020, January 16). 3M Company [Company profile]. https://www.ebsco.com/products/research-databases/business-source-premier

 
Country report

IHS Markit. (2020, March 3). Country/territory report -Australia. https://www.ebsco.com/products/research-databases/business-source-premier

 
Industry profile

MarketLine. (2020, April). Healthcare providers in Germany.[Industry profile]. https://www.ebsco.com/products/research-databases/business-source-premier

 
SWOT analysis

MarketLine. (2019, September 27). Apple, Inc. SWOT Analysis. https://www.ebsco.com/products/research-databases/business-source-premier

Documents from a Website

Stock prices

NYSE. (2020, July 20). The Gap, Inc. stock quote. Yahoo! Finance. https://finance.yahoo.com/quote/GPS?ltr=1

 
Press release

U.S. Food and Drug Administration. (2019, November 15). FDA approves first contact lens indicated to slow the progression of nearsightedness in children [Press release]. https://www.fda.gov/news-events/press-announcements/fda-approves-first-contact-lens-indicated-slow-progression-nearsightedness-children

 

More examples:

Government Documents (not from a database)

U.S. Census

U.S. Census Bureau. (n.d.). QuickFacts: Madison City, Wisconsin. U.S. Department of Commerce. Retrieved June 18, 2020, from https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/madisoncitywisconsin/LND110210

 

SEC/EDGAR filings

Netflix. (2020, April 21). Form 10-Q for the quarterly period ended March 21, 2020. https://www.sec.gov/ix?doc=/Archives/edgar/data/1065280/000106528020000155/form10qq120.htm

 

More Help

Business documents being categorized as "grey literature" means there's no official way to cite many of them. Therefore, many libraries have guides for their business students in which they interpret existing citation standards and adapt them for documents like company profiles, SEC filings, industry reports, and much more. This means you may see different recommendations for the same documents in these guides. If you have any questions, check with your professor or a librarian. As long as the information you present is clear and directs the reader back to your source, you are doing it right.