Established in 1938, and most recently revised in 1987, the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) was developed to create a uniform system of classification for business establishments, and thereby to facilitate the comparability of statistics and data "describing various facets of the U.S. economy." In 1997 the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) adopted the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) to replace the 1987 Standard Industrial Classification in the collection of industry statistics.
The NAICS codes (North American Industry Classification System) were established in 1997, and updated in 2002, 2007, and 2012. They are a result of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and they apply to Canada, Mexico, and the United States. The purpose of replacing the SIC with the NAICS codes is to allow for industry averages and ratios to be comparable between all three North American nations, and to include newer industries not covered by the SIC codes, such as services, high tech, and biotechnology.