Gun sales keep dropping in wake of President Trump's election - KCTV5

Gun sales keep dropping in wake of President Trump's election

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Federal background checks, which do not precisely track gun sales but serve as the best available proxy, have fallen significantly each of the three months since Election Day. (KCTV5) Federal background checks, which do not precisely track gun sales but serve as the best available proxy, have fallen significantly each of the three months since Election Day. (KCTV5)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

Federal background checks, which do not precisely track gun sales but serve as the best available proxy, have fallen significantly each of the three months since Election Day.

The FBI says it ran 2.23 million background checks in February. That's down 14% from February 2016.

Background checks were down 20% in January and 17% in December.

Gun sales have been driven by politics. President Obama, in his doomed attempt to tighten federal gun laws, was the greatest gun salesman in history. Then came Hillary Clinton and her campaign against Trump, who was endorsed by the National Rifle Association.

With Obama and Clinton out of the picture and Republicans in control of Congress, the threat of more restrictive gun laws has disappeared, and people are less motivated to buy guns.

Gun stocks have also dropped steeply. American Outdoor Brands (AOBC), the company formerly known as Smith & Wesson, is down 33% from Election Day. Sturm Ruger (RGR) is down 25% in that time.

The FBI conducts a background check every time someone tries to buy a gun, or guns, from a federally licensed dealer, which includes any dealer at a gun store. Most buyers pass inspection.

Some purchases at gun shows, or between individuals, do not involve federally licensed dealers and are not subject to background checks.

People sometimes apply more than once for a background check for a single gun purchase, or apply only for one background check to buy more than one gun. And some applicants are rejected. So background checks do not directly reflect gun sales.

Ron Quick, owner of Quick's Guns and Transfers, sees a lot of guns move in and out of his shop, but some guns now are slower to move out.

"I think the shelves would of been cleaned out of AR's had Hillary won,” said Quick.

He says like most other gun stores, he stocked up ahead of the November election.

"Mainly because of the fear prior to the election of people losing the right to purchase the AR-15 style guns," he said.

Now, he says for people looking to buy guns, especially an AR-15, now is a good time to buy because everyone has them in stock.

"Those are the ones that are probably down a little bit now in sales," Quick said.

Quick said other guns are selling, and he’s optimistic the industry is in good shape.

"That fear is gone now with the Republicans getting in office, that fear is pretty much gone for the time being," he said.

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