A business is any entity that engages in commerce, selling goods or services. A business also seeks profit, which can be realized through a sale or exchange of products or services, and it can take the form of barter-style trades as well as cash payments. A business may be a sole proprietorship, a partnership, a corporation or an organization.
A wide range of topics falls under the purview of business news, although some areas tend to be more newsworthy than others. For example, companies in the retail industry often make headlines when they experience financial struggles. In addition, the news media regularly covers corporate scandals and the fallout from natural disasters.
The business news of today often focuses on the global economy and markets. While most people associate businesses with large corporations, small businesses are also a major source of employment and economic growth. In addition, businesses are a vital component of local economies and communities.
There are a number of different sources for business news, including newspapers, magazines and online publications. Many of these publications focus on general business topics, while others specialize in specific industries or regions. Business news can also be found in television and radio, although this is less common than with print and online sources.
Aside from the traditional news sources, some organizations produce their own business news, sometimes with an eye toward generating revenue through subscriptions or other types of paid content. These companies often employ a team of journalists and other staff to research and write the news.
Historically, the development of business journalism has been a result of technological change and a growing public appetite for information about the economic world. Around 1700, Daniel Defoe, best known for his novel Robinson Crusoe, began publishing a series of business and economic reports. In 1882, Charles Dow, Edward Jones and Charles Bergstresser founded a wire service that delivered news to investment houses along Wall Street. By the 1990s, business coverage had become more prevalent in newspapers, radio and television.
The Library of Congress offers a number of business news resources, including full-text regional business news publications. To learn more about these and other research tools, please see the Research Guide for Business.