Industries are based on the same type of work or commercial activity in a field or sector . Companies in the same industry may perform similarly to each other and will be affected by factors they cannot control such as the performance of the wider economy, regulation and changing consumer demands.
How a company responds to these factors and how it performs against its competitors can reveal a lot about the management of a business, which is why it is important to study an industry as a whole when researching or evaluating any company.
The level of competition within sectors can have a big impact on other businesses, consumers and the economy generally, which is why the activities of any industry often attract the attention of governments and can lead to regulation.
Industry sectors are subject to scrutiny from many groups apart from governments and shareholders.
They may be evaluated by environmental and consumer groups, by competitors internationally and by foreign governments if they are seeking to expand abroad.
While each country has a similar set of industries, importance can vary depending on jobs provided, income to the country, its competitive advantage and political influence such as unions.
Within each Industry there are groups formed to represent members who can provide a significant amount of information as well as giving the industry a voice to lobby governments and other interest groups.