North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) 1997
41 - Wholesale Trade
This sector comprises establishments primarily engaged in wholesaling merchandise and providing related logistics, marketing and support services. The wholesaling process is generally an intermediate step in the distribution of merchandise; many wholesalers are therefore organized to sell merchandise in large quantities to retailers, and business and institutional clients. However, some wholesalers, in particular those that supply non-consumer capital goods, sell merchandise in single units to final users.
This sector recognizes two main types of wholesalers, that is, wholesale merchants and wholesale agents and brokers.
Wholesale merchants buy and sell merchandise on their own account, that is, they take title to the goods they sell. They generally operate from warehouse or office locations and they may ship from their own inventory or arrange for the shipment of goods directly from the supplier to the client. In addition to the sale of goods, they may provide, or arrange for the provision of, logistics, marketing and support services, such as packaging and labelling, inventory management, shipping, handling of warranty claims, in-store or co-op promotions, and product training. Dealers of machinery and equipment, such as dealers of farm machinery and heavy-duty trucks, also fall within this category.
Wholesale merchants are known by a variety of trade designations depending on their relationship with suppliers or customers, or the distribution method they employ. Examples include wholesale merchants, wholesale distributors, drop shippers, rack-jobbers, import-export merchants, buying groups, dealer-owned cooperatives and banner wholesalers.
The first eight subsectors of wholesale trade comprise wholesale merchants. The grouping of these establishments into industry groups and industries is based on the merchandise line or lines supplied by the wholesaler.
Wholesale Agents and Brokers
Wholesale agents and brokers buy and sell merchandise owned by others on a fee or commission basis. They do not take title to the goods they buy or sell, and they generally operate at or from an office location.
Wholesale agents and brokers are known by a variety of trade designations including import-export agents, wholesale commission agents, wholesale brokers, and manufacturer's representatives and agents.
|411Farm Product Wholesaler-Distributors||Farm Product Wholesaler-Distributors|
|412Petroleum Product Wholesaler-Distributors||Petroleum Product Wholesaler-Distributors|
|413Food, Beverage and Tobacco Wholesaler-Distributors||Food, Beverage and Tobacco Wholesaler-Distributors|
|414Personal and Household Goods Wholesaler-Distributors||Personal and Household Goods Wholesaler-Distributors|
|415Motor Vehicle and Parts Wholesaler-Distributors||Motor Vehicle and Parts Wholesaler-Distributors|
|416Building Material and Supplies Wholesaler-Distributors||Building Material and Supplies Wholesaler-Distributors|
|417Machinery, Equipment and Supplies Wholesaler-Distributors||Machinery, Equipment and Supplies Wholesaler-Distributors|
|418Miscellaneous Wholesaler-Distributors||Miscellaneous Wholesaler-Distributors|
|419Wholesale Agents and Brokers||Wholesale Agents and Brokers|