The ASX has more than 2,000 listed companies and one of the most popular ways to categorise them is by industry sector. Companies listed on the ASX are categorised into market sectors using the Global Industry Classification Standard sectors (GICS).
Not only does categorising companies into industry sectors help local investors make investment decisions, because GICS are internationally recognised, it also makes it easier for foreign investors to understand local markets. Likewise, it allows domestic investors to gain an understanding of international markets that are categorised using GICS as well.
Companies listed on the ASX are categorised into the following sectors:
- Metals/Mining - these include some of the world’s largest resource companies (such as BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto) as well exploration companiesIndustrials – this sector covers a broad range of industries including transport, infrastructure, construction and engineering.
- Materials - including building materials, chemicals, fertilisers and agricultural commodities.
- Financials - covering banks, insurance companies, asset managers and a range of other financial services providers.
- Consumer Discretionary - covers a broad spectrum of companies including media, gambling and general retailers.
- Consumer Staples - includes companies the focus on production and distribution of food and beverages.
- Utilities - this includes major electricity and gas retailers as well as smaller utility providers.
- Energy - explorers and producers of energy resources including oil, gas and renewable energies.
- Health Care - medical practice companies, pharmaceuticals, pathology companies, medical device companies and biotechnology.
- Information Technology - includes software developers and IT consultancies. Companies in this sector tend to be small to medium-sized businesses.
- Real Estate - companies and investment trusts solely focused on residential, commercial and industrial real estate.
- Telecommunications Services - includes telecommunication carriers, distributors and resellers.
Things you should know
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