NICS Background Checks
Courtesy NSSF
Previous Post
Next Post

The surge of gun buying by Americans of all stripes, in all parts to the country continues, and took a big jump last month. As the National Shooting Sports Foundation reports, December 2019 adjusted NICS background check totals — a good indicator of retail gun purchases in the US — increased 15.1 % from a year earlier.

The fourth quarter was up 4.9% as well.

Heading into an election year with all of the Democrat candidates’ running on more restrictive gun control laws — if not outright confiscation — Americans are doing what rational actors do. They’re hedging their bets and buying more guns and ammo. Just as they did in 2016.

What does that mean? Thanks to the anti-gun left’s assiduous opposition to Second Amendment rights, the total number of civilian-owned firearms — 423 million according to the NSSF — is rising by the day, with no end in sight.

Grab that.

Here’s the NSSF’s press release . . .

The December 2019 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) figure of 1,553,965 is an increase of 4.0 percent compared to the December 2018 NSSF-adjusted NICS figure of 1,494,087. For comparison, the unadjusted December 2019 FBI NICS figure 2,898,501 reflects a 15.1 percent increase from the unadjusted FBI NICS figure of 2,517,286 in December 2018.

NICS Background Checks
Courtesy NSSF

The fourth quarter 2019 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) figure of 4,001,455 reflects an increase of 4.9 percent over the 3,813,342 figure for fourth quarter 2018. The 2019 annual total of 13,199,172 is a 0.6 percent increase over the 2018 annual total of 13,116,005.

NICS Background Checks
Courtesy NSSF

Please note: Twenty-five states currently have at least one qualified alternative permit, which under the Brady Act allows the permit-holder, who has undergone a background check to obtain the permit, to purchase a firearm from a licensed dealer without a separate additional background check for that transfer. The number of NICS checks in these states does not include these legal transfers based on qualifying permits and NSSF does not adjust for these transfers. Recently, the state of Alabama had a law change that affected their Brady Law standing which removed qualifying alternate permits usage for firearm transactions. These changes went into effect July 22, 2019 for Alabama. In December 2019, Alabama state’s NSSF-adjusted NICS was 134.5 percent higher than December 2018 which accounts for an additional 37,820 checks over this time last year.

The adjusted NICS data were derived by subtracting out NICS purpose code permit checks and permit rechecks used by states for CCW permit application checks as well as checks on active CCW permit databases. NSSF started subtracting permit rechecks in February 2016.

Though not a direct correlation to firearms sales, the NSSF-adjusted NICS data provide an additional picture of current market conditions. In addition to other purposes, NICS is used to check transactions for sales or transfers of new or used firearms.

It should be noted that these statistics represent the number of firearm background checks initiated through the NICS. They do not represent the number of firearms sold or sales dollars. Based on varying state laws, local market conditions and purchase scenarios, a one-to-one correlation cannot be made between a firearm background check and a firearm sale.

Previous Post
Next Post


  1. That out right lie that gets told about gun owners being a dying minority is just that. A lie. We are on the verge of nationwide constitutional carry.

    And there is nothing the fascists like bernie, hillary or kapo bloomberg can do to stop it.

  2. Pfft. Yeah but it’s all being driven by like 1 million sUpeR colLeCtoRz and a few Jeffros *cleans spit from braces* er, Jethros with a meth habit.

    Doesn’t mean anything. The Blue Wave is coming.

        • Well they don’t have to be but they usually are. Just like police usually murder minorities.

          Disparate impact, brah. Racism is everywhere. Take the red pill and get woke.

          Christ, I can’t keep a straight face typing this crap that I hear from people, in person, regularly. Some people are really, really fucking dumb.

    • “Doesn’t mean anything. The Blue Wave is coming.”

      *Please* don’t make the mistake they made that the HiladBeast was a shoo-in as president. They aren’t rational. They are still *pissed* about 2016. That’s a powerful motivator to get their ass to the polls on election day. We rode the same kind of anger in 2012 to retake the lower house and stop Obama in his tracks from doing worse damage. It *can* happen again, but to us…

  3. Virginia’s laws banning new purchases of black rifles and standard cap mags effective July 1st ( all the confiscation to talk is just an effort to get this passed first) should really boost NICS checks in the months ahead.

  4. Nothing sells guns like Bobby Francis O’Dourke bellowing” Hell Yes We Are Coming For Your AR’s and AK’s.”

    • Saw that t-shirt on someone the other day. I was so tempted to ask them right there if they’d like to try right now.

  5. I wonder how much of the 15.1% increase was in Virginia? There’s a hell of a lot of democrat political salesmanship (obama style) going on.

  6. Well, let’s see just how out-of-hand this kerfuffle goes with Iran. If Iran resorts to terrorist attacks in the U.S., I predict yet another surge in firearm and ammunition purchases.

    • “Well, let’s see just how out-of-hand this kerfuffle goes with Iran.”

      What I heard yesterday was that the Ayatollah has decreed that their response would be proportional.

      Interesting the choice of words, I thought. That’s pretty much the way Trump responded during the 2016 election, to attacks on him by the other candidates.

      All I know is, I’d be very worried if I was a member of a military family of high rank living overseas…

  7. That spike in gun buying is all my fault. Not the NICS spike, just the bigger number of guns actually sold new. Because I had a serious accident in a Bass Pro with my Cabelas/Bass Pro MasterCard. There’s now a bunch less Club Points left on the card and a new Ruger PC Carbine in the house.

    I don’t know how it happened, was just minding my own business. Possibly an effect of the weather, it was rather chilly and damp and breezy that day which instilled a bit of an urgency to get across the Bass Pro parking lot, deep into the store and far away from that danged chill breeze.

    Now there’s the problem of the Remington R51 I ordered at Sportsmans Warehouse. Now that was in the last few days of December, but it isn’t in yet. So does that still go down as a December sale?

    Life can be so very complicated at times.

  8. Guns up!? Good news because that results in less crime. I’m sure the gun haters will celebrate that. Full sarcastic mode on.

  9. Didn’t buy a gat but got some ammo and accessories. And just like that I’m “done” setting up my AR15. For now. Maybe😃 Now on to another gun!

  10. So as we face foreign threats, Coonman launches domestic threats. That will end well, arrested by the Militia and sent to prison.

  11. “The December 2019 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) figure of 1,553,965”
    That was just me where is the data for everyone else?

  12. I think people don’t worry about the right to bear arms enough when there is a Republican President. If people are buying lots of guns it’s at least on their mind which is good.

    • Yea ammo is the bottleneck. A billion unloaded ARs wielded by people who don’t have training isn’t worth much.

      Ammo is just less glamorous. It’s so Much more fun to buy a new gun than another case of ammo.

  13. I did my part. And I’m going to do it again in the next week or two. And I ended up buying a total of 4000 rounds for Christmas, so now my floorboards are groaning under the weight of my ammo. I think I have more ammo than the entire army of Ecuador.

    Hey, I think I’m gonna attack Peru.

    • I keep running into surplus Israeli IMI ammunition at bargain basement prices, especially their sniper type heavier open tip boat tail ammo. I keep buying it as long as they keep selling it. It works great out of my carbine and I am not complaining, but makes me wonder what wonder ammo must have just replaced what I am buying with that they are willing do dump this so cheaply. I want that one!

  14. With Bloomie gaining traction and Virginia happening I don’t think things are gonna quiet down. If anything I see prices starting to climb again into late 2020 if not for a few years after depending on what the election looks like. Maybe even state level wins driving it not federal ones.

  15. I want a Vulcan cannon in 6.5Creedmore, come get some you space alien punks

  16. Problem is at least 4 million of those are just from Illinois as they run and re-run NICS checks on every concealed carry permit holder in the state 3 to 5 times a day. I’m serious; they actually do that. Take a look at the checks by state. Illinois pulls ahead by a massive margin. I highly doubt 4,900,000 firearms were bought in Illinois.

    Next year 8 million background checks will be run in Illinois alone if trends continue of which maybe 1% if that will be actual sales.

Comments are closed.