Wednesday, September 13, 2017

July 2017 NICS Continue on Path to Second Highest Year Ever for Gun Sales

The Trump era of the National Instant Criminal Background  Check System  (NICS) checks has had seven months of high sales.  The record for NICS checks was set in 2017, with over 27 million NICS checks for the year.

The National Instant background Check System (NICS) checks were 1,742,546 in July of 2017.  There were 14,346,648 checks since January 1, more checks than all of 2010. In 2016 the number was 16,026,660 at the end of July. Through July, 2015, they were 12,067,075.  The July figure is 79% of the 2016 NICS checks and 108.8% of the 2015 NICS checks.

The NSSF has figured out how to remove checks done for permits and renewals. That gives a much better estimation of the number of new guns sold. Recent calculations by the NSSF show there are about .53 guns sold for each NICS check. That would amount to about another million guns in private hands in July of 2017, and 7.7 million more privately owned guns since the beginning of the year. About 14.7 million were added to the stock in 2016.

The NICS checks for June, 2017 were 1,901,768.  That is the second highest number of NICS checks for any June. The highest was in 2016, with 2,131,485. The third highest June was in 2015, with 1,529,057.  Both of those were driven by fear that strong gun control measures might be passed by President Obama. 

Firearm sales and NICS checks have not dropped precipitously with a Trump presidency as expected.  Instead, gun sales and NICS checks have stayed at high, near record, or record levels in 2017.  The July, 2017 NICS checks are 89% of the 2016 figures, 108.8% of 2015 figures.

The high number of NICS checks reflects an expanded base of firearms owners and shooters who are buying more guns under the expectation of a prosperous Trump Presidency.

There is a high inventory of firearms for sale, and many good quality AR-15 types can be had for under $500. Ammunition prices have been slowly dropping.

The number of people with carry licenses continues to soar. There are over 15 million. At the time of this report, the number has likely surpassed 16 million. They are 5-15% of voters in many states, some crucial swing states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin. When a carry permit is obtained or renewed, another NICS check is done.

Kentucky contributes to the number of NICS checks by performing a NICS check on every Kentucky concealed carry permit holder every month. Kentucky performs nearly three million checks every year.

The fear of violence from the Left, as shown in Berkley, Portland, the District of Columbia, and San Francisco, may be leading to more firearm sales.

The media propaganda against President Trump has driven people on the left to buy guns and ammunition.

There has been a gradual increase in the use of NICS for things other than firearm sales.  The increases are for such transactions as the sales of suppressors/silencer, and even checks on school teachers.

The average ratio, of the number of NICS checks to additions of firearms to the private stock in the United States, over 15 years, is a little less than .6 NICS checks per firearm.

If that ratio holds true, over 7.5 million guns were added to the private stock in the first half of 2017.

The expected drop in firearms sales has been minimal. Sales are at historical high levels, only a little less than the records set in 2016.  If the economy continues to pick up, 2017 could become a record year for NICS checks.

 ©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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