Since January 2009 when Obama took the oath of office, gun sales have been on a steady increase due to the fear that Second Amendment rights would slowly disappear. Now, with President Trump in office and the White House showing increasing support for gun owners, gun sales have begun to slide downward.
Dubbed by some as the “Trump Slump,” even some of the oldest brands in the country are feeling the pressure from the downturn in gun sales over the past few years. Having a gun-friendly president means that there is less chance that the ability to purchase a gun will erode over time, making it more difficult for gun manufacturers to create urgency for their sales — and they’re feeling the pinch in a big way.
While fears of a government that limited the rights of gun owners was a real risk under Obama, the no-nonsense focus of the Trump White House has allowed gun owners to rest easier. Unfortunately for gun manufacturers, that means that the double-digit growth of previous years has leveled off to a dismal trickle. With Republicans firmly in control of both the House and Senate, Americans are feeling more confident that they will be able to purchase a gun whenever they’d like to instead of rushing to make a purchase before laws were changed.
One of the key segments of the gun industry that saw a massive increase under the Obama regime was AR-platform rifles, most commonly called “modern sporting rifles.” These guns were often maligned by the media as being a type of weapon of mass destruction, as they do tend to be used in major shooting incidents. The market for this type of rifle is overwhelmingly male, between the ages of 45 and 64, with a median income over $75,000 — a key demographic for any gun manufacturer. These expensive weapons saw a major uptick in sales as well as in the number of gun manufacturers who were licensed to sell them.
The most recent casualty of the lowered demand for weapons is Remington Corporation. Even though they’ve supplied weapons and armaments to Americans for more than 200 years, the massive gun manufacturer was not immune to the Trump Slump. Their recent filing of a Chapter 11 bankruptcy has rocked the industry, with Smith & Wesson also feeling the burn with profits that have fallen over 90% year over year. Even Sturm Ruger, the largest firearm manufacturer in the country, noted a drop in revenue in the fall of 2017 of over 30 percent.
While firearm manufacturers may bemoan the reduced rate of sales, it’s actually good news for Americans. It means that more people are secure in the fact that they’ll be able to make a firearm purchase when and where they want to, instead of feeling the need to stock up before an uncertain future.
~ Firearm Daily