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Sector Primer Series: Consumer Discretionary Get to know the S&P 500 Consumer Discretionary sector.
BY Louis Bellucci

The Global Industry Classification Standard® (GICS®) assigns a company to a single business classification according to its principal business activity. This assignment uses quantitative and qualitative factors, including revenues, earnings, and market perception. The sector is the first level of the four-tiered, hierarchical industry classification system that includes 11 sectors, 24 industry groups, 69 industries, and 158 sub-industries. GICS was developed in 1999 and is jointly managed by S&P Dow Jones Indices and MSCI.

The Consumer Discretionary sector comprises companies primarily engaged in:

• Manufacturing consumer products including durables, leisure products, apparel, and luxury goods;

• Retail, as distributors, internet and direct marketing retailers, specialty retailers, and multiline retailers such as department stores;

• Providing consumer services such as restaurants, hotels, resorts, and casinos; and

• Manufacturing automobiles and automobile components.

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