What do Private Firms Look Like?

36 Pages Posted: 16 Aug 2010 Last revised: 30 Mar 2011

See all articles by John Asker

John Asker

UCLA

Joan Farre-Mensa

University of Illinois at Chicago - Department of Finance

Alexander Ljungqvist

Stockholm School of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI); Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN)

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Date Written: March 28, 2011

Abstract

Private firms in the U.S. are not subject to public reporting requirements, so relatively little is known about their characteristics and behavior – until now. This Data Appendix describes a new database on private U.S. firms, created by Sageworks Inc. in cooperation with hundreds of accounting firms. The contents of the Sageworks database mirror Compustat, the standard database for public U.S. firms. It contains balance sheet and income statement data for 95,297 private firms covering 250,507 firms-years over the period 2002 to 2007. We compare this database to the joint Compustat-CRSP database of public firms and to the Federal Reserve’s 2003 National Survey of Small Business Finances.

Keywords: Private firms

JEL Classification: M41, C93

Suggested Citation

Asker, John William and Farre-Mensa, Joan and Ljungqvist, Alexander, What do Private Firms Look Like? (March 28, 2011). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1659926 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1659926

John William Asker

UCLA ( email )

8283 Bunche Hall
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1477
United States

Joan Farre-Mensa

University of Illinois at Chicago - Department of Finance ( email )

2431 University Hall (UH)
601 S. Morgan Street
Chicago, IL 60607-7124
United States

Alexander Ljungqvist (Contact Author)

Stockholm School of Economics ( email )

111 60 Stockholm
Sweden

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN) ( email )

Box 55665
Grevgatan 34, 2nd floor
Stockholm, SE-102 15
Sweden

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