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Has the firearm industry gone into a slump?

It's no secret that the firearms market in the US is politically driven. Under a Trump Presidency all categories of the firearms industry are reporting a down turn in sales.

Where Obama was nominated as " gun salesman of the year" by the NRA due to his attempts to restrict firearms rights in during his Presidency, the opposite seems to be taking place under the Trump Presidency. On whole it seems that US citizens don't feel that their firearms rights are under threat under this current Presidency and aren't buying in the amounts that they were even a year ago.

While this does hurt the bottom line of manufacturers and retailers, there is some silver lining to the decline in sales. Manufacturers can now catch up on their backlog, they can fix any tooling that had to be under constant workload, and research and development can become a focus again rather than clearing a 6 month or greater backlog of orders. Retailers can once again replenish stock levels, might see ammunition that have been difficult to find for the past 8 years, and their employees can go back to managing the storefront rather than spending their entire days calling in for NICS background checks.

Maybe in all of this prices and product availability can go back to a decent baseline again. Manufacturers were in some cases having to make "new" product SKU's such as 400 round bricks of .22LR ammunition where just a year before that the baseline for that product was 500 rounds for the same price as the "new" 400 round brick. This translates to better availability and hopefully better prices for the consumer. Maybe the people that want to go to the range or train with their ammunition can find a constant supply now that the hoarding craze is evaporating.

Another silver lining, this time to countries that are outside of the US, is that manufacturers are now willing and able to look at other exterior markets. For example with Canada, a market with the entire country having less firearms buying power than the state of California that manufacturers were less interested in during the buying crazes. Now manufacturers can tool their assemblies to meet the needs of Canadian firearms laws and produce products that can sell in the Canadian market. Such as with the FightLite MPX that we recently have written about.

Things will level out, and the market isn't in retreat, it's just normalizing. The market boom that was politically driven over the past 8 years is no longer, but that's not going to get rid of the good manufacturers and retailers. We're simply going to see leaner operations moving forward.

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