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Economic Activities and Economic Sectors. Primary Secondary Tertiary Quaternary. Activities & Sectors. The collection of like economic activities make up the various economic sectors.

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economic activities and economic sectors

Economic Activitiesand Economic Sectors





activities sectors
Activities & Sectors
  • The collection of like economic activities make up the various economic sectors.
  • A nation’s leading economic sector can be used to identify that nation’s “stage of development” or “production” when using an “evolutionary” style model. These models are typically based on western nations.
primary economic activities
Primary Economic Activities

Primary level economic activities are those involved with the extraction of natural resources or raw materials. They include but are not limited to agriculture, fishing, mining and forestry.

secondary economic activities
Secondary Economic Activities

Secondary economic activities are those involved with the manufacture or processing of raw materials into finished products.

tertiary economic activities
Tertiary Economic Activities

Tertiary economic activities are those activities associated with the distribution of the finished product to the market. These include retailing and wholesaling.

connecting the activities
Connecting the Activities

Raw materials are collected, taken to manufacturing for processing into a finished product, and this finished product is distributed through the market.

RM → FP → M

The cost of the finished product is a function of the cost of raw material extraction, transportation to manufacturing, processing, and the cost of distributing the finished product to the market.

quaternary economic activities
Quaternary Economic Activities

Quaternary economic activities are those involved with the processing and distribution of information and people. These activities include but are not limited to education, research, development, financial services and government activities.

economic sectors in north america
Economic Sectors in North America
  • Less than 1% of people in North America earn a living through farming.
  • Although North America’s secondary sector has declined, North America remains one of the most productive industrial regions in the world.
  • In North America, there has been a shift in employment from the primary and secondary sectors to the tertiary sector. Although this is the fastest growing sector in our economy, the jobs are among the lowest paying.
  • Quaternary level activities are primarily concentrated in large urban places and require higher levels of education than the other sectors. Growth in this sector has been slow but is expanding.
north america as a post industrial globalized economy
North America as a Post-Industrial Globalized Economy
  • North America’s economy has shifted from an emphasis on primary and secondary activities to one in which the major job growth and development is in the tertiary and quaternary sectors. This is characteristic of a post-industrial economy.
  • The economy of North America is globalized. This means that we import and export finished products all over the world. The continued health of our economy has become inexorably dependent on the continued economic health and political behavior of our trading partners.