This listing covers a few of the most useful resources for publicly available information that can help you in developing improved market and sales forecasts and in assessing industries and competition for new product planning for your organization.
You can readily begin sales forecast experimentation with correlation of some of these variables with your own sales data using Excel’s Data Analysis spread sheet tools. The industry and competitive company data will help broaden your though process about industry opportunities.
Whenever you look that closely at your business you will learn something new. When the analytic process intrigues you, and you need our experience and assistance, give us a call at 914-962-5795.
New Product Development Resources
- United States Census – This is your gateway to both the US Census Bureau’s latest decennial census as well as archives for trending.
- 2012 Statistical Abstract of the United States – The standard reference for summary data of everything the federal government tracks in PDF format. You may actually find it is worth buying the book.
Industry and Company Data
- Current Industrial Reports – This data, compiled by the Census Bureau, can be used for market analysis and forecasting.
- EDGAR – The EDGAR database covers all SEC filings and forms for all public companies
Economic Data Sources
- FRED II – The new version of Federal Reserve Economic Data (FRED®) — a database of over 800 U.S. economic time series. With FRED II you can download data in Microsoft Excel and text formats and view charts of data series. The single best source for your independent economic variables.
- Survey of Professional Forecasters from the Philadelphia Fed
- Foreign Exchange Data Base – This database from Pacific Exchange Rate Service will be more up to date than the Federal Reserve Data
- SBA Data -Contains reports & data from the SBA (Small Business Administration. This is a good source for arrange of firm size data by industry & location to help you understand the macro characteristics of your customer base.
- Economagic – This provides a wealth of time series data in easy cut and paste formats. It provides lots of hard to find industry specific data. If you want their forecasts also, you will have to subscribe.
- X-13-ARIMA Seasonal Adjustment Program – This is the Census Bureau’s new seasonal adjustment program. It provides enhancements to X-11 with improved seasonal, trading day, and holiday effect adjustment capabilities. After using X-11 for over 30 years, through several generations of computer development, it almost seems like sacrilege to add a new version number, but here it is for downloading. Good seasonal decomposition work is always a critical first step in almost any forecast.