No. of Recommendations: 2
The best source of information on preferred stocks I am aware of is the Standard & Poor's multivolume set usually available in the reference department of your local library. People keep asking for the title. Having just been to my local library it is as follows--

Standard & Poor's Standard Corporation Descriptions, Corporation Record. It once was a 6 volume maroon set with monthly inserts. In the last 2 years, it has become a 1" thick 8-1/2 x 11 paperback, gold back with maroon cover. New volumes are issued monthly. Check the index in the front of the most recent volume for the most recent report on the stock of interest.

You will find in this set a description of every US corporation offering investments to the public. It includes a basic summary of financial data and earnings and lists all stock classes and bonds together with ratings and call (or conversion) provisions.

One weekness with the S&P Reports is that they are updated at about a 2 year interval. Hence, some of the reports can be two years out of date. If the company is relatively well established, that may not be a concern, but it can be in the case of a volatile situation affecting earnings or ratings. So S&P is useful as a screening device, but in your due diligence phase, you will probably want to check for recent earnings reports or news before you finally invest.

Standard & Poors has a website and offers individual corporate reports for sale for $4.95. I suspect these contain the same information, but I have never actually seen one.

Most preferred stocks do have call provisions. Most are callable at a specified price after a specified date, but some have complex call provisions and a series of call dates and prices.

You can also get information on preferred stocks from the issuing corporation. Most will send copies of the original prospectus for the issue. That will include details of call provisions, etc, though any ratings information could be out of date. Contact their investor relations department.
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