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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

3. Citing sources in your reference list

3.1: How to format your reference list

Placement: Start the reference list on  a new page, after the body of the assignment.

Title: Type the word References, centered, at the top of the page.

Order: Your Reference list entries should be listed in alphabetical order by the last name of the author, or, if there is no author, by the first word of the title (excluding A. An, The). Last names are inverted (Smith, J.) and then followed by the initials of their given names. 

If you have references to items written by a group (such as the Conference Board of Canada), then you alphabetize their entries according to the first significant word in the group's name excluding the initial article (A, An, The) .

If you have multiple reference by the same author, they are listed in chronological order. For example:

Lowry, L.D. (2007). Title of article. Title of journal. Volume (Issue), Pages.

Lowry, L.D. (2012). Title of article. Title of journal. Volume (Issue), Pages.

Spacing: Double-space all entries.

Indentation: The first line of each entry should be left aligned, subsequent lines are indented one half-inch (a hanging indentation).

Note: due to formatting issues, the examples on this page and on the following pages of this guide do not have a hanging indentation.


3.2: Sample reference list entries

Note: see Chapter 9 (Reference List) of the APA Manual, 7th edition for detailed guidance on creating reference list entries.


Article from an academic journal:

Tip 1: italicize the journal title and the volume number.

Tip 2: capitalize the first word of the article title and subtitle.

Tip 3: capitalize each word of the journal title.

Tip 4: include a DOI (Digital Object Identifier) if available.

Author, A., Author, B., & Author, C. (year). Title of article. Title of Journal, Volume number (issue number), page range. DOI

Bailey, W.J. & Spicer, A. (2007). When does national identity matter? Convergence and divergence in international business ethics. Academy of Management Journal, 50(6), 1462-1480.


Article from an online magazine website or blog:

Tip: see page 4 of this guide for examples of magazine articles retrieved from Library Databases. Here is an example of a posting from a blog on a news website. Optional: you can add the notation Web log post in square brackets after the article title in order to better describe the format of the source.

Author, A. (Year, Month Day). Title of article [notation]. Blog Title. Retrieved from URL.

Keene, Tom (2012, July 12). Cart before horse [Web log post].  EconoChat, Bloomberg Business Week. Retrieved from .

Article from an online newspaper from a newspaper website:

Tip: Online newspaper articles from the newspaper's own website may lack page numbers. The APA manual suggests providing a link to the newspaper's home page if the article is easily located through a website search. Otherwise, provide a specific URL if it appears to be stable. See page 4 of this guide for examples of newspaper articles retrieved from Library Databases.

Author, A. (Year, Month Day). Title of article. Title of Newspaper. URL.

El Akkad, O. (2012, September 21). iPhone 5 Apple's best yet, but not glitch free. The Globe and Mail.


Tip 1: if your book has an editor, then you should list the editor's name as if they were the author, but include the abbreviation Ed. in parentheses after the name and before the year.

Tip 2: If the book has two authors, connect their names using an ampersand (&).

Tip 3: Italicize the title of the book.

Tip 4: Capitalize the first word of the book's title and subtitle.

Tip 5: Include additional information about the book, such as the edition, in parentheses after the title, but not in italics.


Reference to an entire book (with an individual author):

Author, A. (year). Title of book. Publisher.

Audi, R. (2009). Business ethics and ethical business. Oxford University Press.

Reference to an entire book (with an editor):

Editor, B. (Ed.). (year). Title of book. Publisher.

Smith, J. (Ed.). (2009). Normative theory and business ethics. Rowman & Littlefield.

Reference to an entire book (with no author or editor):

Tip: if the book has no identified author or editor, then begin the reference list entry with the title of the book. Capitalize the first word of the title and italicize the title.

Title. (year). Publisher.

Sage brief guide to marketing ethics. (2012). Sage.

Reference to a chapter or entry in a book:

Tip 1: determine if the chapter or entry has an identified author. If so, then you need to include both the names of the chapter's author as well as the editor of the book.

Tip 2: Remember to italicize the book title (not the chapter or entry title). Use the pp. abbreviation to refer to the pagination of the chapter or entry.

Author, A. (year). Title of chapter or entry. In A. Editor (Ed.), Title of book (Edition, pp. x-xx). Publisher.

Sierra, L. (2011). Marketing communication. In T. Gillis (Ed.), The IABC handbook of organizational communication: a guide to internal communication, public relations, marketing, and leadership (2nd ed., pp. 379-392). Jossey-Bass.

References to ebooks:

Tip: if you retrieved a book from an online ebook database such as ScholarsPortal books, and the page numbers in the ebook version match the page numbers in the print version, you can cite it as if you had consulted the print edition (see above for examples).

If you cannot determine this, then APA Style permits you to add the database name at the end of the entry by adding a retrieved from statement. The goal is to lead your reader to the version of the book that you cited in your own work. Do not include the URL of the book if you retrieved it from a commercial (subscription) database (e.g. ScholarsPortal books).


Page or document from a company or organizational website:

Tip: according to, if you are making a passing reference to a website within the text of your paper, then no reference list entry is needed. However, if you are citing a page or a document from a website, you do need to cite it within the text and in your reference list.

Information on company or organizational sites may have identifiable individual authors, a group author, or no author. You must spell out the full name of a group author. The title of the document typically appears at the top of the page. The basic format for citing a reference for a source found on a website is:

Author, A. (date). Title of document. URL

Samsung (2010). Samung's history. .


Reference Lists: APA Style Official Guidance and Examples

The following articles and posts from the APA Style blog provide additional help on constructing and formatting your Reference List.