Sectors of the EconomyPrimary, Secondary, Tertiary, Quaternary, and Quinary Primary SectorThe primary sector of the economy extracts or harvests products from the earth. The primary sector includes the production of raw material and basic foods. Activities associated with the primary sector include agriculture (both subsistence and commercial), mining, forestry, farming, grazing, hunting and gathering, fishing, and quarrying. The packaging and processing of the raw material associated with this sector is also considered to be part of this sector. Secondary Sector.
The secondary sector of the economy manufactures finished goods. All of manufacturing, processing, and construction lies within the secondary sector. Activities associated with the secondary sector include metal working and smelting, automobile production, textile production, chemical and engineering industries, aerospace manufacturing, energy utilities, engineering, breweries and bottlers, construction, and shipbuilding. Tertiary SectorThe tertiary sector of the economy is the service industry. This sector provides services to the general population and to businesses.
Activities associated with this sector include retail and wholesale sales, transportation and distribution, entertainment (movies, television, radio, music, theater, etc.), restaurants, clerical services, media, tourism, insurance, banking, healthcare, and law. In most developed and developing countries, a growing proportion of workers are devoted to the tertiary sector. In the U.S., more than 80% of the labor force are tertiary workers. Quaternary SectorThe quaternary sector of the economy consists of intellectual activities.
Activities associated with this sector include government, culture, libraries, scientific research, education, and information technology. Quinary SectorSome consider there to be a branch of the quaternary sector called the quinary sector, which includes the highest levels of decision making in a society or economy. This sector would include the top executives or officials in such fields as government, science, universities, nonprofit, healthcare, culture, and the media.