What are public sources for US firm/plant sizes, in order to characterize the firm size distribution? And what are stylized facts about the firm size distribution: What does it approximate to?

Somewhat related: What about the firm age distribution? That is, the distribution of firms given their age. I understand the latter is a soft concept in the data, but are there first-order approximations for age, and how does its distribution look?

  • $\begingroup$ I've actually looked into the latter some, and can only offer anecdotally that firm age and size are not correlated as the oldest companies (Beretta, Kongō Gumi, etc) are not remarkably large. Wikipedia has some soft data here $\endgroup$ – Jason Nichols Dec 21 '14 at 6:31
  • $\begingroup$ census.gov/ces/dataproducts/datasets/lbd.html - the obvious starting point is the official stats portal... $\endgroup$ – Deer Hunter Dec 21 '14 at 23:16

Compustat Annual is used in Gabaix and Landier (2008). A famous stylized fact is the power-law distribution (by Gabaix again) of firm sizes. But power-law claims have been criticized as resulting from poor measurement.

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