July’s Adjusted Background Checks Total of 1.3 Million is the Second Highest on Record

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Courtesy NSSF

July’s adjusted background check total of 1.3 million was up slightly from June and represented the second highest total for the month in history (set, of course, in July of 2020).

From the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s Mark Oliva . . .

There were nearly 1.3 million background checks conducted for the sale of a gun in July, holding steady and slightly higher than June’s figure of 1,279,300. This is the second-highest July for Adjusted NICS figures, second only to last year’s record-breaking figure of 1.8 million. That’s a strong demand signal from the American public that there is steady and strong appetite for continued firearm sales.

Summer is typically a part of the year when firearm sales will slow, but July’s figures defy that trend. Americans are still buying guns and they’re buying them in numbers higher than previous years and at a pace that would have been unpredictable two or three years ago. To date, more than 11 million background checks have been completed for the sale of a gun.

Firearm manufacturers continue serving a market that is on an 16-month-long streak of elevated sales. Manufacturers have been meeting this demand, but it is clear that customer demand has yet to be satisfied. While manufacturers have performed and incredible feats to meet this unprecedented demand, this sustained record-level of firearm sales shows that with greater inventory, it is likely background checks for gun sales have the potential to be even higher.

Factors that continue to drive sales are undeniably concerns for personal safety, along with overtures from the Biden administration to pursue a strict gun control agenda. Those measures include the proposed ban on brace-equipped AR pistols, the proposal to redefine frame or receiver and regulate out of existence the ability of law-abiding Americans to build their own firearms in the home for personal use and the nomination of David Chipman to be director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), a gun control lobbyist who advocates for banning the Modern Sporting Rifle (MSR).

With a president who blurts out that he thinks semi-automatic handguns should be outlawed and an ATF Director nominee who wants a new “assault weapons” ban still in play, Americans aren’t slowing their gun-buying roll.

Here’s the NSSF’s press release . . .

The July 2021 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) figure of 1,291,298 is a decrease of 30.1 percent compared to the July 2020 NSSF-adjusted NICS figure of 1,848,307For comparison, the unadjusted July 2021 FBI NICS figure 2,860,476 reflects a 20.9 percent decrease from the unadjusted FBI NICS figure of 3,614,192 in July 2020.

The total NSSF-adjusted NICS January – June 2021 reflects a decrease of 8.8% compared to the same time period in 2020.

The July 2021 figures were the second strongest for the month on record, surpassed only by July 2020, when 1.8 million background checks for a firearm sale were conducted.

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 states of Alabama and Michigan had law changes that affected their Brady Law standing which removed qualifying alternate permits usage for firearm transactions.

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.

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  1. How is that possible? Gun owners are just a few old white guys that are dying off.

    Could it be that the fascist left is lying to us?

    • “Could it be that the fascist left is lying to us?”

      Say it isn’t so!!!

      Back on point: I think the stereotypical “old fat white guys” are buying firearms aplenty because, why not? At the same time, I believe there are a substantial number of everyone else buying firearms. Case in point: I have a cousin-in-law who is a woman about 28 years old. She purchased a semi-auto handgun several months ago and asked me to train her. (As far as I know, she has never shot any firearm before. We tentatively agreed on this Sunday for semi-formal training–and I am happy to do it.) I believe this cousin is quite typical of many younger people who are purchasing their first firearms.

      • My wife’s one sister vowed never to own or have a firearm in her home. Came to our place Dec 2020 for a week long lesson on firearms. She got to shoot whatever she wanted and no limit on ammo use. Was able to decide what caliber and gun she wanted. Went back home to her state and in less than a week had the gun she wanted, last one left; even scored ammo. Told her that I was more than pleased that she changed her mind. And she picked a totally different gun and caliber than my wife; there was no pressure on our part to influence what she liked. Added another one to our ranks.

      • “Could it be that the fascist left is lying to us?”This question appeared in the above article. My answer to the question is as follows.Hell yes, it could be, and likely is.

  2. For the record, I didn’t contribute to July’s sales, on any other month’s sales, this year or last.

    For the record.

    • Ammo will be priced according to the supply and demand, like any other commodity. There will be some gouging, caveat emptor.

  3. All I got was some ammo but plan on adding to my meager arsenal soon…BREAKING! Fatazz Jay Prickster signed a bill in ILLinois making gun gunfiscation easier for state cops over expired FOID cards. After stealing millions from the state po-leece. And slow walking FOID & CCL. News at 11😕

  4. On Our president theBiden’s advice I turned in all my weapons of war and mass destruction and got me a made in China assembled in Turkey double barrel shotgunm.
    Oh bad news, I found out in this state its illegal to conceal a longarm, that’s kinda fcked up,and darn I’d just made an appendix carry iswb for it.
    And all the girls say, ” If that’s not a pickle in your pants I’m either in trouble or one heck of a good time.”

  5. I don’t think my boat is big enough to hold the safe, gonna have to make a number of trips I guess!

  6. Ok, so now that we’ve got the hard data proving that increased gun and ammo sales are in fact the “new normal”, WILL YOU AMMO MANUFACTURERS FINALLY GET OFF YOUR BUTTS AND TRIPLE YOUR PRODUCTION CAPACITY?!!?

    If you make it, we will buy it!!

  7. Note if you would, all the gun buyers referenced on the bar graph were law abiding types. Additionally, I doubt that your run of the mill criminal would bother doing up the paperwork involved in a legitimate purchase.

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