Examines the accepted principles of controlled indexing, in published abstracting/indexing services and databases from the unusual aspect of the publisher’s need to minimize production costs. Detailed information concerning the production of Library & Information Science Abstracts (LISA) is presented showing income and costs. Ways in which factors involved in controlled indexing may be seen to manifest themselves in production parameters are shown by plotting graphs of the numbers of abstracts and index pages against numbers of abstracts for 77 individual issues of LISA. The close fit of the data to straight lines, with correlation coefficients approaching unity, provides a means of managing the size of individual issues to yield minimum printing/binding costs. The extended use of the Classification Research Group (CRG) classification notation to provide automatic extraction of chain indexing strings and associated cross-references is described in detail. The gains in staff productivity resulting from this and other procedures are indicated with reference to the expansion in LISA’s coverage between 1978 and 1984.