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Government & Intergovernmental Economic Data Sources

Many governments and IGOs (Intergovernmental Organizations; like the World Bank) collect data to support their missions. A lot of data is released publicly; some is available by request (e.g. FOIA requests or applying to access microdata).

Examples of commonly used providers of data in business research are:

United States

Agencies and Organizations

There are many other government agencies that have a wealth of data related to specific industries or topics, such as the USDA for agricultural data, FDA for food and drug data, EPA for environmental data, etc. For more industry-specific recommendations, see our industry research guides.

For example, if you're looking for market information on the organic whole chicken (broilers) market the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service has production, sales, and inventory data for the past 20 years, the USDA Economic Research Service provides market outlook for poultry and eggs, and the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service provides news briefs on the organic poultry market.

Here are some places to start if you're not sure what agency would have information: 


  • Statistical Abstract of the US - summary of U.S. social, political, and economic statistics. Helpful to find which agency may have more data.
  • - use to find open data produced by U.S. federal agencies.
  • DataUSA - Charts and data on places, industries, jobs, and higher education in the U.S. Use the source information to locate more data.
  • - use to find and request access to restricted microdata from U.S. federal statistical agencies.
  • Rand State Statistics - A variety of U.S. datasets on social science topics including poverty, demographics, health, education, crime, employment, energy, and government.


Specific Organizations

  • IMF Data (International Monetary Fund)
    • Global macroeconomic and financial data. Common datasets are the Balance of Payments Statistics, Direction of Trade Statistics, Government Finance Statistics, and International Financial Statistics.
    • To download data and use their API, create an account.
  • OECD Data
    • Provides a wide range of socio-economic data covering many countries around the world. Has data on a variety of topics like the economy, environment, healthcare, education, agriculture, and more.
  • World Bank Data
    • Provides development-related data around the world.


  • ProQuest Statistical Insight - Statistical data from U.S. government publications (1973-), state government and private sources (1981-), and international organizations (1983-).
  • Microdata Library from the World Bank - A collection of datasets from the World Bank and other international, regional and national organizations.

Answered By: Alice Kalinowski
Mar 08, 2024

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