Consumables

DEFINITION of 'Consumables'

Goods used by individuals and businesses that must be replaced regularly because they wear out or are used up. Consumables can also be defined as the components of an end product that are used up or permanently altered in the process of manufacturing, such as semiconductor wafers and basic chemicals.


BREAKING DOWN 'Consumables'

Stocks of companies that make consumables are considered to be relative safe harbors for equity investors when the economy shows signs of weakness. The reasoning is simple: people will always need to purchase groceries, clothes and gas no matter what is going on in the broad economy.

Many of the items measured in the basket of goods used to calculate the Consumer Price Index (CPI) are consumables; inflation in these items is closely watched because it can lower the discretionary income people have to spend on items such as cars, vacations and entertainment.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Consumer Staples

    Essential products such as food, beverages, tobacco and household ...
  2. Inflation

    The rate at which the general level of prices for goods and services ...
  3. Customer Service

    The process of ensuring customer satisfaction with a product ...
  4. Consumer Price Index - CPI

    A measure that examines the weighted average of prices of a basket ...
  5. Discretionary Income

    The amount of an individual's income that is left for spending, ...
  6. Basket Of Goods

    A relatively fixed set of consumer products and services valued ...
Related Articles
  1. Options & Futures

    Cyclical Versus Non-Cyclical Stocks

    Investing during an economic downturn simply means changing your focus. Discover the benefits of defensive stocks.
  2. Markets

    Consumer Spending As A Market Indicator

    What people buy and where they shop can provide valuable information about the economy.
  3. Credit & Loans

    The Disposable Society: An Expensive Place To Live

    Resisting the trend toward consumption will boost your bottom line and bolster the environment.
  4. Economics

    Evaluating Grocery Store Stocks

    Retail grocers are no longer a homogeneous group selling products in the same manner. Find out how to evaluate these companies.
  5. Economics

    What is a Complement?

    A good or service that’s used in conjunction with another good or service is a complement.
  6. Retirement

    Ipsy Review: Is It Worth It?

    Discover the history of ipsy, how much packages cost, options available for membership, major competition and what the future looks like for the company.
  7. Stock Analysis

    The Biggest Risks of Investing in Johnson & Johnson Stock (JNJ)

    Learn the largest risks to investing in Johnson & Johnson through fundamental analysis and other potential risks. Also discover how JNJ compares to its peers.
  8. Budgeting

    Craft Coffee Review: Is It Worth It?

    Learn more about one of the first and most flexible specialty-grade coffee subscription services on the market, a perfect fit for any coffee lover.
  9. Budgeting

    Plated Review, Is It Worth It?

    Take a closer look at the ready-to-cook meal service, Plated, and learn how the company can help you take the hassle out of home cooking.
  10. Investing

    Barbie's Body Wasn't the Problem (opinion)

    Barbie's body type wasn't what killed sales, argues Angela Travillian. Other factors were at play.
RELATED FAQS
  1. What are the best mutual funds for investing in the aerospace sector?

    The only current mutual fund that is directly targeted to the aerospace and defense sector is the Fidelity Select Defense ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How does a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) affect my salary?

    Some companies build salary adjustments into their compensation structures to offset the effects of inflation on their employees. ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Where can you buy NetSpend reload packs?

    You can only purchase NetSpend reload packs at Giant Eagle, Albertsons, Roundy's and Pathmark supermarkets. NetSpend cards ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What does marginal utility tell us about consumer choice?

    In microeconomics, utility represents a way to relate the amount of goods consumed to the amount of happiness or satisfaction ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What are some common ways product differentiation is achieved?

    There are many ways to achieve product differentiation, some more common than others. Horizontal Differentiation Horizontal ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. What is the difference between an OEM (original equipment manufacturer) and a VAR ...

    An original equipment manufacturer (OEM) is a company that manufactures a basic product or a component product, such as a ... Read Full Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Flight To Quality

    The action of investors moving their capital away from riskier investments to the safest possible investment vehicles. This ...
  2. Discouraged Worker

    A person who is eligible for employment and is able to work, but is currently unemployed and has not attempted to find employment ...
  3. Ponzimonium

    After Bernard Madoff's $65 billion Ponzi scheme was revealed, many new (smaller-scale) Ponzi schemers became exposed. Ponzimonium ...
  4. Quarterly Earnings Report

    A quarterly filing made by public companies to report their performance. Included in earnings reports are items such as net ...
  5. Dark Pool Liquidity

    The trading volume created by institutional orders that are unavailable to the public. The bulk of dark pool liquidity is ...
Trading Center