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Trade is an essential part of commerce. It refers to sale, transfer or exchange of goods. It helps in making the goods produced available to ultimate consumers or users. These days goods are produced on a large scale and it is difficult for producers to themselves reach individual buyers for sale of their products. Businessmen are engaged in trading activities as middlemen to make the goods available to consumers in different markets. In the absence of trade, it would not be possible to undertake production activities on a large scale. Trade may be classified into two broad categories.
  1. internal
  2. external
Internal or home trade is concerned with the buying and selling of goods and services within the geographical boundaries of a country. This may further be divided into wholesale and retail trade. When goods are purchased and sold in bulk, it is known as wholesale trade. When goods are purchased and sold in comparatively smaller quantities, it is referred to as retail trade. External or foreign trade consists of the exchange of goods and services or organizations operating in two or more countries. If goods are purchased from another country, it is called import trade. If they are sold to other countries, it is known as export trade. When goods are imported for export to other countries, it is known as entrepot trade.

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