September 03, 2020
By Mark Chesnut
This year’s long string of record gun sales continued in August, according to the most recent figures from the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF). And the August record shattered the previous record for the month set last year by more than 50 percent.
The August 2020 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) figure of 1,684,083 is an increase of 51.2 percent compared to the August 2019 NSSF-adjusted NICS figure of 1,113,535.
“August’s adjusted NICS figures of nearly 1.7 million background checks associated with the sale of a firearm are in line with the months-long trend we’ve witnessed since March, when figures topped an all-time one-month record of 2.3 million,” said Mark Oliva, NSSF director of public affairs. “Each month since April, adjusted NICS figures averaged between 1.6 and 1.8 million. August’s figures are a record-high for the month over all previous years and show us that concerns for personal safety and self-defense continue to remain a priority for law-abiding Americans.”
Such a record should be no surprise to those closely watching current events in the country. Between the effort to “defund police” and widespread violent riots that are an imminent danger to property and lives, many Americans are buying guns who would never have considered doing so in the past.
“The sustained pace of firearm sales proves that law-abiding Americans are turning out by the millions to exercise their God-given right to keep and bear arms,” Oliva said. “NSSF estimates that nearly 5 million of these firearm purchases were made by people who never previously owned a firearm.
“Americans are witnessing gun control politicians refuse to enforce penalties on violent criminals while at the same time actively working to deny those who obey the law the ability protect themselves. These sales figures are proof that Americans refuse to be compliant victims to violent criminals who prey on the most vulnerable of our society.”
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.
Freelance writer and editor Mark Chesnut is the owner/editorial director at Red Setter Communications LLC. An avid hunter, shooter and political observer, he has been covering Second Amendment issues and politics on a near-daily basis for the past 20 years.