Home > Regional Economic Accounts > Regional Definitions > Sectors and legal form of organization

Sectors and legal form of organization

In the national income and product accounts (NIPAs), gross domestic product and other major aggregates are presented in terms of three economic sectors: Business, households and institutions, and general government.

Businesses are classified into five categories, generally according to legal form of organization: Corporations, sole proprietorships, partnerships, "other" private business, and government enterprises.

Corporate business consists of entities required to file Federal corporate tax returns (Internal Revenue Service (IRS) form 1120 series) and the following entities: Mutual financial institutions and cooperatives subject to Federal income tax, private noninsured pension funds, nonprofit organizations that primarily serve businesses, Federal Reserve banks, and federally sponsored credit agencies.

Sole proprietorships are all entities that are required to file IRS Schedule C (Profit or Loss from Business) or Schedule F (Farm Income and Expenses).

Partnerships are all entities required to file Federal partnership income tax returns, IRS Form 1065 (U.S. Partnership Return of Income).

Other private business consists of all entities that are required to report rental and royalty income in IRS Schedule E (Supplemental Income and Loss), tax-exempt cooperatives, owner-occupants of nonfarm housing, and the services of buildings and equipment owned and used by nonprofit institutions that primarily serve individuals.

Government enterprises are government agencies that cover a substantial portion of their operating costs by selling goods and services to the public and that maintain separate accounts.