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APA for Business Sources

In-text (or paranthetical) citations are there to give credit to your source, and also to point your reader to the complete reference at the end of your paper. Some key things to remember about in-text citations:

  • APA uses the author-date system; in-text citations should include the author's last name, and the date of the publication
    • (Willson, 2013) or: According to Willson (2013)...
  • If you are using a direct quote, then the page number should also be included
    • (Willson, 2013, p.2) or: when "using a direct quote" (Willson, 2013, p.2)
  • If there is no author, use the first word or few words of the title in quotation marks for an article, or the title italicized for a book
    • ("Citing for business," 2013) or (Citing for business, 2013)
  • If there is no date, use n.d. instead
    • (Willson, n.d.) or: As explained by Willson (n.d.)...
  • No page number? You can use the paragraph number: (Willson, 2013, para. 1)

Some more tips:

For long corporate names that can be abbreviated:

Use the complete name the first time, along with the abbreviated version; following citations use only the abbreviated version

  • (American Psychological Association [APA], 2009) or According to the American Psychological Association (APA, 2009)...
  • You will use the long version in your reference list at the end of your paper
    • American Psychological Association. (2009). Publication manual of the American Psychological Assocation. Washington, DC: Author.

Multiple citations in-text

Do you have multiple sources to cite for one sentence? Order them alphabetically in parentheses, and separate the sources with semi-colons:

  • (APA, 2009; Lee, 2011; Okanagan College Library, 2010)

Citations appearing multiple times within a paragraph

Wondering how to format multiple citations from the same source within a paragraph? Here are the rules:

  • all parenthetical citations need the date, no matter how many times they appear
  • if the author's name is in the text, outside of parentheses, you don't need the date after the first citation (unless it could be confused with other citations)
  • to see an example, go to the APA Style Blog on this topic

More resources for in-text citations

Business Sources: from Library Databases

Annual reports from SEDAR or EDGAR
(lululemon athletica inc., 2012, p.24)

Multiple pages? (lululemon athletica inc., 2012, p.24-26)

Business Source Complete
Is it a Marketline Report?

(Marketline, 2012)

(Hoover's Inc., 2006)

Passport GMID​
(Euromonitor International, 2012)

(Sustainalytics, 2013)

(World Market Intelligence, 2014)

Have multiple reports or citations from the same place and date?
Use small case letters after the date to identify each different source

(Marketline, 2012a)
(Marketline, 2012b)

(Euromonitor International, 2012a)
(Euromonitor International, 2012b)

Using more than one source in the citation? Arrange them alphabetically
(Marketline, 2012a; Euromonitor International 2012b)

Business Sources Web

From the web:

Annual reports from company website

(lululemon athletica inc., 2012)

CANSIM tables

(Statistics Canada, 2013)

SME Benchmarking Tool

(Industry Canada, 2013)


(Statistics Canada, 2012)


The basic structure for citing a website in text is as follows:

Author and Date Provided

(Smith, 2014)

No Author and Date Provided

You would move the title of the webpage to the position of Author, but you only need to include enough of the title that the reader could find it in the reference list. So if my title was: WestJet soars to new heights with new jets, I would shorten to (quotation marks go around webpage titles in these cases):

("Westjet soars," 2014)

No Author and No Date

("Westjet soars," n.d.)

Corporate Author and No Date

If there is no person associated with the webpage but it is on a company website, you can use the company as the author, so using WestJet again...

(Westjet, n.d.)

Multiple Web Pages with the Same Author from the Same Year

Often you will be using several pages from the same website. In this case you need to let the reader know which page you are talking about in your text, and it will also indicate which complete citation in the reference list you are referring to.

with dates no dates

(WestJet, 2015a)

(WestJet, 2015b)

(WestJet, 2015c)

(WestJet, n.d.-a)

(WestJet, n.d.-b)

(WestJet, n.d.-c)


See more examples in the APA Style Blog post: How to Cite Multiple Pages From the Same Website

Using an Online Video?

Please see the standard APA guide for how to cite this

Personal Communications

From the Library's APA guide:

Citing personal communications (letters, phone calls, interviews, e-mail messages, etc.) in text:

  • L. Coates (personal communication, December 16, 2008) stated that...
  • According to the department chair (L. Coates, personal communication, December 16, 2008)...

Do not include personal communications in the reference list. Cite them in text only. 

Two or more works with same author, same year

Identify each source by adding a,b,c etc. after the publication date

(Smith & Smith, 2007a, 2007b, James & Ivy, 2004a, 2004b)


Every table must:

  1. be numbered
  2. have a title
  3. have an entry in your reference list.

How to format a table in your paper:

You must number all tables in the order they appear in your paper (APA, p.127).

The table number and title appear above the table, and the source of the data appears below the table in a note.

Example of a table number and title (above the table):

Table 1

Average Expenditure per Household, Canada and Selected Metropolitan Areas, Recent Years — Vancouver, British Columbia

Formatting the note (below the table):

If you have not changed the source in any way, then below the table you indicate the source after the word Note (Note is italicized)


Note: Reprinted from "Article Title," by Author, year, Source Title, p. number, retrieved from http://xxx Copyright Year by Copyright publisher.

From Multiple Sources:

If you have used information from multiple sources to create your table you will still need to cite all the places where you got the information, under the table. While you do not have to give a full citation for each source you use, you will have to include a full reference in the Reference list.


Note: Data for consumer brand preferences of dog food from Statistics Canada (2014), from BC Stats (2013), and from Wade (2015).

If you are using different sources to present information for various categories this will also need be identified:

Note: Data for consumer brand preferences of dog food for Canada adapted from Statistics Canada (2014), and for British Columbia from BC Stats (2013). 

If you have altered the table, use 'adapted from' before the citation information

Figures: Charts, Maps, Graphs, Photographs, Drawings or Illustrations

Any image, chart, map, drawing, picture, etc. is referred to as a "figure" by APA.

All figures you include must have a number and a caption. The caption provides both the explanation and a title for the figure (APA, p.158).

The figure number and caption are located below the figure.

Every figure must:

  1. be mentioned in the text
  2. be numbered
  3. have a descriptive caption 
  4. have a full entry in the reference list

A caption "is a concise explanation of the figure that is placed directly below the figure and serves as the title of the figure" (APA, 158).


Figure X. Short caption describing figure. Reprinted from "Article Title", by author, date, Source Title, p. number, retrieved from http://... Date of Copyright by Copyright Holder


Figure 1. Graph of Sales of Apparel and Footwear. Reprinted from Canadian Retail Report 2014, by Euromonitor International, May 20, 2015, retrieved from Copyright 2015 by Euromonitor International. 

Adapted from Multiple Sources:

As with tables you will need to cite all the places where you got the information.


Figure 1. Graph of Sales of Apparel and Footwear in Canada and the United States by retail value 2011-2014. Data for US from Euromonitor (2014), and for Canada from Statistics Canada (2013).



You may include appendices in your paper for things that don't fit well in your main text. Examples could be questionnaires, tests, lists, or other detailed or complex bits of information.

Label appendices in the order they appear in your paper. If you have only one, it will be Appendix. If there are more than one, it will be Appendix A, Appendix B, and so on.

To refer to an appendix in text use the appendix label.


The data demonstrates that both countries have seen increases in trade imports (see Appendices A and B for complete data). 

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