(PresidentialWire.com)- This year was already shaping up to be the second-best year for gun sales in the United States. Then for the week leading up to Black Friday, the FBI’s NICS recorded a staggering 687,788 firearms background checks.
On Black Friday alone, the FBI processed 187,585 gun-related background checks. That’s slightly more than were processed on Black Friday in 2020, and the tenth-best day ever for background checks in the history of the NICS.
The gun industry has struggled to keep up with the unprecedented demand seen throughout the country since March of 2020. And when the riots during the summer of 2020 exploded, gun purchases, especially among first-time buyers exploded as well.
2020 set the record for gun sales, with the NICS recording 21 million gun purchases for the year. And while most months of 2021 are lagging behind 2020, they haven’t dropped by much and often outstrip last year’s demand.
The surge in demand has left manufacturers scrambling to increase production. Smith & Wesson became the first gunmaker in history to reach a one billion dollar year in sales.
According to Joe Bartozzi, president and CEO of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, last week’s 687,788 background checks were “truly remarkable.” He said Black Friday week underscores not just the sustained demand for firearms, but also the “resilience of the firearm and ammunition industry to meet that demand.”
Background checks through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) is widely considered the best analog for gun sales because sales made through licensed dealers require a NICS check.
However, NICS numbers do not include sales of used guns in states where NICS checks are not required for sales between private individuals. Additionally, some states allow those with gun-carry permits to bypass the checks when purchasing additional guns.
The NICS Black Friday numbers released by the FBI don’t include the same detailed breakdown the agency provides in its monthly data. The raw numbers include a significant amount of background checks conducted for other reasons such as gun-carry permit processing. While these raw numbers aren’t perfect, they are still a useful metric for determining how many gun sales occur during a specific time period before detailed information is available.