As some business struggle, gun shops prosper

As some business struggle, gun shops prosper

Gun sales have been on the increase since the COVID-19 pandemic started. In Tierra Amarilla, people can buy guns at Henry’s general store. (Roberto E. Rosales/Albuquerque Journal) Copyright © 2020 Albuquerque Journal Mike Holley opened his small business, Gunslingers Gun Store, in Taos less than a month before the COVID-19 pandemic struck New Mexico. While that timing might have devastated others – with pandemic restrictions wreaking havoc on businesses across several industries – Holley has not had difficulty attracting customers. Despite having to close his store for a few weeks, Holley said he now finds himself struggling to keep his shelves stocked with guns and ammunition as demand has remained steadily high over the past few months. “We’re busy all day, every day,” Holley said. “It’s impossible sometimes to try to replenish our inventory.” His situation is not unique. Gun stores across New Mexico have seen record-breaking sales since the start of the pandemic. March saw the highest monthly total of background checks on record, with 24,571 total checks, according to data from the FBI. The number of background checks have remained high throughout the subsequent months. Currently, the state is on pace to have more than 205,000 total background checks, easily the largest total since the FBI started tracking the data in the late 1990s. The increase is also happening across the nation. Kentucky has the most background checks per one million residents, at nearly 530,000, while Hawaii has the lowest, with 10,072. That nationwide demand is evident […]

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