P.E.S.T.E.L. Analysis-of a Company, Industry or Product

P.E.S.T.E.L.

P.E.S.T.E.L. or P.E.S.T.L.E. -is a method by which to analyze a company, industry or product. The acronym stands for:
 
  • Political
  • Economic
  • Social
  • Technological
  • Legal
  • Environmental
It is more in-depth that a S.W.O.T. analysis which looks at Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats.

Starting Points-in order to analyze the company, industry or product, you will probably want to start by looking at the following resources:

Company and Government Websites:
  • Google Search on Company name and "investor relations". This will often have links to Annual Reports, Corporate Presentations (usually include Power Point presentations), Financial Statements such as Forms 10-K, 10-Q and 8-K (for more information on these see- Using SEC documents_2-10-09.ppt ppt
  • EDGAR Database (Securities and Exchange Commission)
    Official SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) documents such as Form 10-K, 10-Q, Proxy statements, registration statements, and merger and acquisition documents.*Be sure to look at the DEF14A (Proxy) statements and the Management Discussion and Analysis sections of Form 10-k, Form 10-Q for insights into management.
  • Seeking Alpha
    Corporate Earnings call transcripts. These are the transcripts from quarterly and yearly earnings announcements are done by corporate officers to various financial analysts.


Databases:
  • Business Source Premier (Original Interface) -search under "company entity", NAICS code describing the industry or product, industry profile, SWOT analysis of a company among others.
  • Business Insights: Essentials . Contains company histories, brands, market share information and articles about companies broken down into categories such as marketing, management, etc.
  • ABI/INFORM Collection
    Search all three ABI/Inform databases together here or search one at a time below. ABI/INFORM Complete provides current and historic abstracts and many full-text articles from over 2,800 business and management journals, including hundreds of titles from outside the U.S. The database covers finance, management, marketing, operations, accounting, business conditions, sports and business, entertainment, and case studies.
  • LexisNexis Academic -company profiles including brands, trademarks, patents, news, transcripts, wires, legal cases, etc.
  • New York Times (1980-present)
    Full-text of The New York Times from 1980 - present. For Historical coverage please use ProQuest Historical Newspapers The New York Times (1851 - 2007)
  • Wall Street Journal (1984 - present)
    Full text of The Wall Street Journal from 1984-present. For issues from 1889-1993, see the  Wall Street Journal-ProQuest Historical Newspapers database.
  • Statista
    A statistics portal that provides data on over 80,000 topics from more than 10,000 different sources.  The content is purely aggregated statistics, geared towards business and marketing statistical needs, with a focus on current awareness.  Easy-to-use infographics and tables are available for download as images to insert into presentations.

Print Resources:​
  •  Encyclopedia of business information sources great starting point that suggests various resources that cover particular industries and business topics.
  •  Standard & Poor's Industry surveys covers most major industries on a quarterly basis. Statistics, overview, information about economic, political, legal, technological influences on that industry and suggested sources which cover it. Also a section on how to analyze that particular industry.

Associations -look for industry associations or organizations. These often lobby for members, disseminate statistics and news about the industry including legal, technology and new product information. Try  the following:
Industry Publications -determine key industry publications and which databases they may be in. Not every publication is available in electronic databases. You may have to get articles via Interlibrary Loan.
  • Encyclopedia of business information sources 
  • Serials Directory
    Bibliographic information and current pricing of popular magazines, journals and other periodicals. It contains a listing of over 178,000 U.S. and international titles, including newspapers. Historical data is included for an additional 20,000 titles. Pertinent information for over 85,000 serial publishers worldwide is available, including in some cases email and web addresses.
  • Standard & Poor's Industry surveys 
 

Political

Political
  • Regulations/deregulation
  • Copyright, patents, trademarks, intellectual property
  • Trade control, import/export, tariffs,
  • Taxes on corporations increase/decrease
  • Government increases/decreases funding for certain industries
  • Government friendly or unfriendly toward potential trading countries/partners

Suggested sources:
  • Code of Federal Regulations (CFR)
    Codification of the general and permanent rules published in the Federal Register by the departments and agencies of the Federal Government.  The 50 subject matter titles contain one or more individual volumes, which are updated once each calendar year, on a staggered basis.  Each title is divided into chapters, which usually bear the name of the issuing agency. Each chapter is further subdivided into parts that cover specific regulatory areas.
  • eCFR-Electronic Code of Federal Regulations
    The Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (e-CFR) is a currently updated version of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). It is not an official legal edition of the CFR. The e-CFR is an editorial compilation of CFR material and Federal Register amendments produced by the National Archives and Records Administration's Office of the Federal Register (OFR) and the Government Printing Office. The OFR updates the material in the e-CFR on a daily basis. The current update status appears at the top of all e-CFR web pages
  • International Trade Administration. United States Department of Commerce
    Office of Trade and Industry Information. Link to statistics and information about industry, country and trade data including overviews, tarriffs, exports, etc.
  • United States Patent and Trademark Office
    Includes a search function for US patents.

Economic

Economic
  • Fiscal policies
  • Growth rates, inflation, interest rates, exchange rates
  • Unemployment rate
  • Labor Costs, union –vs-non-union
  • Credit costs
  • C.P.I., levels of consumers disposable income
  • Price fluctuations and availability of raw materials
  • Weather, climate change influences
  • Price of transporting raw materials and finished goods
Recommended sources:
  • Federal Reserve Board -Statistical Releases
    Various statistical releases such as: foreign exchange rates, interest rates, commercial paper, banks, flow of funds, etc. Daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual statistics both current and historical
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics. U.S. Department of Labor
    Detailed releases of a wide variety of economic statistics including: Consumer Price Index (CPI), productivity, consumer spending, wages and earnings, employment/unemployement, inflation among others.  They Publish the Consumer Expenditure Survey (CE), a survey of American buying habits (spending, earnings, etc.) as well as The American Time Use Survey (ATUS) that measures the amount of time people spend doing various activities. 
  • Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce
    Covers a wide variety of economic indicators at the national, international, regional and industry levels, including: Gross Domestic Product(GDP), Personal income, Balance of Trade, and an overview of the U.S. Economy.
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics-Policy
    The Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a variety of information to help you evaluate public policies on healthcare, retirement benefits, the minimum wage, workforce education and training, economic development, workplace safety, monetary policy, consumer spending, and other topics that affect the well-being of American workers, retirees, and their families

Social

Social
  • Population growth rate
  • Age of population
  • Health consciousness
  • Career attitudes-older workers not as willing to work long hours.
  • Buying habits
  • Attitudes toward buying foreign vs domestic made goods
  • Age and sex distribution
  • Attitudes toward perceived  product quality and customer service
  • Attitudes toward “green products” & renewable energy.
  • Education and income levels
  • Lifestyle, habits, hobbies.
Recommended Sources:
  • U.S. Census Bureau
    Social, demographic and economic information. Includes the American FactFinder resource.
  • Pew Global Attitudes Survey
    Gauges public attitudes toward globalization, democracy, and other issues. Users can view all of these reports on the site and also see the datasets used to craft each report.
  • Pew Internet & American Life Project
    From the website, "The Project produces reports exploring the impact of the internet on families, communities, work and home, daily life, education, health care, and civic and political life. "
  • Docuticker
    Daily update of new reports from government agencies, ngo's, think tanks, and other groups. Search by keyword/subject.
  • Simmons OneView
    Simmons OneView(formerly Simmons Choices3) provides access to U.S. adult (18+) consumer data on product and brand usage, spending behavior, media usage/habits, and more. It can be used to create custom reports which analyze demographic and/or psychographic characteristics of product users and their media behavior.  It allows cross tabulation of hundreds of consumer product categories and usage data for over 8,000 brands, inclusive consumer media habits, diverse demographic categories and psychographic (attitudinal and lifestyle) profiles.  It consists of three parts: National Consumer Study (NCS), National Hispanic Consumer Study (NHCS) and New Media. Most recent data available is at least two years old. Our license allows for five simultaneous users.
  • CQ Researcher
    Comprehensive reporting and analysis on current issues in the news. Each report includes an introductory overview; background and chronology on the topic; an assessment of the current situation; tables and maps; pro/con statements from representatives of opposing positions; and bibliographies of key sources.

Technological

Technological
  • Rate of technological change
  • Spending on Research &Development
  • Legislation regarding technology
  • Communication infrastructure
  • Internet infrastructure and usage
  • Is the industry/company technologically a leader or follower?
  • Social Media-usage and coverage. Is is positive or negative? Use in marketing and public relations.
Recommended Resources:
  • EDGAR Database (Securities and Exchange Commission) . Look at the Form 10-K or Form 10-Q for the company you are researching. Often spending on R&D and technology can be found in the MD&A (Management Discussion & Analysis section) or in the Financials.
  • Morningstar.com -detailed analysis of over 2,000 companies which usually mention major information about technology.

Environmental/Ecological

Environmental
  • Weather influences
  • Climate Change
  • Laws regulating environmental pollution
  • Recycling and use of recycled materials
  • Waste management-costs, regulations, how is waste disposed of?
  • Attitudes toward “green” or ecological products and raw materials
  • Attitudes, support for and costs for renewable energy
Recommended Sources:
  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
    The US EPA provides information on major environmental topics, including laws and regulations. The site includes a database that allows you to Search Your Environment by zipcode that includes public records.
  • CSRwire.com
    The leading source of corporate responsibility and sustainability, press releases, reports and news.
  • Corporate Watch
    CorpWatch, formerly known as an organization called TRAC-Transnational Resource & Action Center, is a site that keeps and eye on corporations expanding into global markets and provides resources on these issues. The organization's mission is to "counter corporate-led globalization through education and activism. We work to foster democratic control over corporations by building grassroots globalization--a diverse movement for human rights, labor rights and environmental justice".
  • Most publicly traded companies publish either Corporate Social Responsibility Reports or Sustainability Reports-look at the company's webpage usually under "investor relations"
  • Look at the Annual Report and Form 10-K for the company as these often have information about recycling and waste and environmental/ecological issues.

Legal

Legal
  • Anti-trust laws
  • Discrimination law
  • Copyright, patents / Intellectual property law
  • Consumer protection and e-commerce
  • Employment law
  • Health and safety law
  • Data Protection Rules & regulations
  • Legal cases/lawsuits-impacts and costs
Recommended Sources:
  • United States Patent and Trademark Office
    Includes a search function for US patents.
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics. U.S. Department of Labor
    Detailed releases of a wide variety of economic statistics including: Consumer Price Index (CPI), productivity, consumer spending, wages and earnings, employment/unemployement, inflation among others.  They Publish the Consumer Expenditure Survey (CE), a survey of American buying habits (spending, earnings, etc.) as well as The American Time Use Survey (ATUS) that measures the amount of time people spend doing various activities. 
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics-Policy
    The Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a variety of information to help you evaluate public policies on healthcare, retirement benefits, the minimum wage, workforce education and training, economic development, workplace safety, monetary policy, consumer spending, and other topics that affect the well-being of American workers, retirees, and their families
  • Occupational Safety & Health Administration-United States Department of Labor
    With the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, Congress created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)* to assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance.
  • Thomas - Legislative Information
    Database of United States legislative information including: bills, resolutions, the Congressional Record, treaties, Committee Reports, Public Laws, Roll Call Votes, etc.
  • LexisNexis Academic -Go to Get Company Info, search by name or ticker then look under Legal -for recent cases.
  • EDGAR Database (Securities and Exchange Commission) -search under the latest Form 10-K for the company. There is a section labelled "legal proceedings" or similar).