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Citing Business Sources in APA Style

A guide to citing business information sources according the the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th edition

2. Citing references in the text of your assignment

APA Style uses the author-date citation system (rather than footnotes or endnotes), which are often called in-text citationsparenthetical citations, or narrative citations. These are discussed in the Seventh Edition in Chapter 8, Works Credited in the Text. 

  • You must include an in-text citation whenever you directly quote from another work, or when you paraphrase an idea from another work.
  • You must include a page number in in-text citations for direct quotations, and you are encouraged to include them when you paraphrase.
  • There must be a corresponding Reference List entry for every in-text citation (except for a few exceptions, such as personal communications). 

2.1: Examples of in-text citations with page numbers (print or online)

To cite a source in the text of your written assignment, indicate the last name of the author(s), or if there is no author, the first few words of the document title (in quotation marks), then the page, chapter, figure, or table numbers (if applicable). Narrative citations incorporate the author's name and date of publication within the text. Parenthetical citations place the author and date in parentheses after a quotation or paraphrase. If a publication was written by an organization (such as an association, corporation, or other type of group), then you need to spell out the name of the group in full.

You must provide a specific page number (or specific part) when quoting directly from a source, and you are encouraged to to do so when paraphrasing.

  • Example of a narrative citation for a direct quotation:

...according to Ojala (2006), “transformational librarians look at the changes in the information world and take advantage of those changes to enhance their roles”(p. 5).

  • Example of a parenthetical citation for a direct quotation with multiple authors:

..."teams at the top are the most difficult" (Katzenbach & Smith, 1999, p. 3).

  • Example of a parenthetical citation for a paraphrase (one author):

There are nine ways to build demand through marketing (Kotler, 1999, p. 47).

  • Example of a parenthetical citation for a paraphrase (group author):

         Financial literacy is an essential skill for Canadians (Task Force on Financial Literacy, 2010, p. 4).

  • Example of a parenthetical citation for a paraphrase (no author):

Facebook addicts are a great target market ("Your piece of Facebook action", 2012, p. 11).


2.2: Examples of in-text citations without page numbers

Indicate the last name of the author(s) or, if there is no author, the first few words of the document title (in quotation marks), then the year of publication, then cite the nearest heading and the number of the paragraphs following, preceded by the abbreviation para.

1. Example of a parenthetical citation, personal author:

Parking meters and vending machines must be reprogrammed to accept the new loonie and toonie (Caton, 2012,  para. 5).

2. Example of a parenthetical citation, group author:

Vending machines are a key retail channel in captive locations such as hospitals (Euromonitor, 2012, Trends section, para. 4).

2.3: Two or more works, same author, same year.

In order to differentiate between two or more works by the same author that were published in the same year, assign letter suffixes to the publication year, both in the in-text citation and in the corresponding entries in the reference list.

         1. Example (group author):

(Datamonitor, 2011a, p.2)

(Datamonitor, 2011b, p.5)

2. Example (personal author):

(Porter & Rivkin, 2012a, p. 54)

(Porter & Rivkin, 2012b, p.80)

2.4: Examples of In-text Citations for Personal Communications

Personal communications include nonrecoverable resources such as email or text messages, telephone conversations, Teams or Zoom chats, etc. Include the initial and surname of the communicator, and an exact date, if possible. These citations may be formatted as narrative citations, or as parenthetical citations. A corresponding Reference List entry is not required.

Narrative citation:  L. Lowry (personal communication, February 26, 2021)

Parenthetical citation: (L. Lowry, personal communication, February 26, 2021)

Guidelines and Examples from APA Style