Local gun business sees increase in demand

Published 5:35 pm Wednesday, November 18, 2020

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With less than two months to go in 2020, sales of firearms have hit a new high in the U.S., already topping the prior record set in 2016, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

The surge began when the novel coronavirus hit the country in March and spurred lockdowns nationwide.

The holiday season is expected to lift gun sales even more. November and December are traditionally among the busiest months of the year for selling firearms, the industry trade group noted in an analysis based on data from the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which are viewed as a proxy for sales.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation found that 17.2 million background checks were completed this year, versus 15.7 million in 2016, the previous high-water mark for gun sales. Firearm purchases have climbed every month since March, and more than 1.7 million background checks were conducted in October alone, a roughly 60 percent jump over the same period in 2019.

In Luverne, the arms race for guns reflects the entire county – people want their firearms and they want them now.

“The demand that people want for guns right now is completely outweighing our supply,” said David Noble, manager of Big Daddy’s Outdoors in Luverne.

“Some of these manufacturer’s don’t have the components to make all these firearms. One of our suppliers, from what I heard, had to even shut down for a while.”

Noble explained his reasoning for the influx in gun sales.

“The COVID situation has certainly made it’s own impact. There’s also a lot of rioting and looting going on across the nation that’s putting people on edge. The average blue collar worker believes in the right and freedom to bear arms, and due to recent events, I believe that those people do have every right to buy a gun,” Noble said.

The ‘recent events’ that noble speaks of is the 2020 presidential election.

“A Democratic ticket is always good for gun sales. There was already an increase before the election, but for as long as I’ve been selling firearms, if there is a democratic ticket then the gun sales are going to rise,” Noble said.

Noble expects the demand for guns in the area to continue to rise as we head into the winter months.

“The COVID issues just seem to be getting worse, which is causing some food shortages in some areas. I’d expect this to go on a little while longer.”