Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Business Bootcamp: Understanding Quartiles


Each financial ratio benchmark in RMA Anniual Studies has three points (Median Upper, Median, Median Lower) that divide an array of values into four equal groups called quartiles.  So if a company’s value is equal or above the median upper, then it falls into the upper quartile.  If it falls between the median upper and the median, then the company ranks in the upper middle quartile.  This helps you analyze how a company compares to others of similar size.


Resource Roadmap

Resource Types of info to be found
RMA Ann. Statement Studies   Financial ratios (NAICS)
D&B industry Norms Financial ratios (SIC)
ValueLine Information and advice on stocks, industries, mutual funds, options, and convertible securities. Analysis on stocks and funds. Reports include 5-year stock price history, ratios, SEC filings, ownership information, written analysis, key ratios, financial reports (10-K & 10-Q)
ABI/INFORM Complete Articles from trade journals & newspapers,  industry reports from BMI and Dun & Bradstreet, selected annual reports.
Business Source Complete Articles from trade journals & newspapers, investment research reports, industry reports, market research reports, country reports, company profiles, SWOT analyses.
Business Insights: Essential Company overview, articles, SWOT analysis, analyst reports.
NexisUni Analyst reports (Zack’s Equity Research), articles, company lists
EDGAR Online Financial Reports for Public Companies (10-K, Balance sheets. Income statements, Cash flow statements)
Google Finance Public company information (and some limited private company info) includes news, financials back a couple of years, key stats, discussion, and links to blogs.