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The ammo boom is no dud: As gun shoppers are discovering, it's becoming easier to buy a gun than ammunition.
As a growing number of gun shoppers are discovering these days, it's becoming easier to buy a gun than it is to purchase the ammunition for it. Shortages of popular handgun calibers in particular have dealers and customers fuming, and ammo makers have shifted their production lines into overdrive to keep up with the demand. How long will the "bullet bubble" last? That depends in large part on politics in Washington and in statehouses across the land, and the messages that various legislative efforts convey.
Concerns over what the election of Barack Obama portends for gun owners is the main cause for the inflated demand for ammunition. In fact, since last November's election ammunition has been flying off store shelves faster than you can say "microstamping," with sales increases topping 100 percent in many areas. Gun sales ramped up by 42 percent last November, but have cooled off slightly since. From Election Day to now, the monthly sales average for firearms has been about 29 percent higher than normal. February sales tailed off a bit, to slightly more than 23 percent over average, according to sales figures compiled by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF).
Ted Novin, the NSSF's director of public affairs, says that the next report on ammunition sales won't be in until May, but there's enough anecdotal evidence to suggest more boom times for the gun crowd — literally and figuratively. "From what we've heard, ammunition manufacturers are operating at full capacity in an attempt to keep up with demand," says Novin. "Gun owners are worried about taxes being added to ammo, or worried about new laws that will affect the production, and consequently the price, of ammunition. It's understandable; there are a lot of people in power now who have a long history of supporting bills that violate Second Amendment rights."
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At Mark's Outdoor Sports in Birmingham, Ala., owner Mark Whitlock is nonplussed by what has apparently become a rush to hoard ammo.
"I've seen some strange things in the past 29 years in business but I never thought I'd see the day when I would make one order in one day for more ammo than I sold during all of the previous year," said Whitlock. "I'm doing that, knowing I won't get it, and also knowing that if I did, I could sell it all and be ordering more three days later."
It is estimated that there are approximately 10 billion bullets sold annually in the United States, and 20-30 billion bullets sold worldwide annually.
Originally posted by Helig
The whole 10 billion rounds of ammunition sold is not that impressive really considering when divided up among the estimated 320 million inhabitants of the United States that leaves about 31.25 rounds of ammo per person, little more than a full magazine for your standards M16 or M4. even if only half of the population were purchasing all of the 10 billion rounds that would only bring the number up to 60 rounds of ammo purchased per person (out of 160 million people) per year which is really easy to burn through in a single trip to the shooting range.