With gun control becoming part of the national debate over the last week in the aftermath of NBC Sports anchor Bob Costas’ comments, Smith & Wesson have announced a 48% surge in firearms sales and a quarterly profit of $21.2 million dollars.
“Net sales from continuing operations for the second quarter were a record $136.6 million, up 48.0% from the second quarter last year,” states a press release by Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation.
The $21.2 million profit compares to a $1.6 million loss in the same quarter last year.
“The increase was led by continued strong sales across all of the company’s firearm product lines, including M&P™ branded products, such as pistols, modern sporting rifles, and the recently launched Shield™ pistol designed for concealed carry and personal protection,” adds the press release.
The news helped push shares in Smith & Wesson up almost 3% in after-hours trading.
Given the fact that Black Friday gun sales were 20% higher than the previous year, smashing the all time record as the FBI reported 154,873 background check requests, expect the performance of gun manufacturers like Smith & Wesson in the third and fourth quarters to be even stronger.
As we reported last month, stocks in both Smith & Wesson and Ruger surged on the day after Barack Obama secured a second term in the White House, with gun activists concerned that a lame duck administration would seek to take a bite out of the second amendment.
In addition, gun stores across the country reported a deluge of customers, with some owners estimating a 400% increase in sales compared to normal trading. “It was the largest day that we’ve ever had,” one gun store owner told WKYT.
Sales were already surging before the election, with Irvin Walker, owner of Triggers Gun Shop in Mills, Wyoming, labeling Obama, “the best gun salesmen we’ve had.”
The majority of customers, many of whom are first time gun owners and women, say that they are purchasing firearms for two primary reasons – fear of social unrest in the aftermath of an economic collapse and concerns that President Obama will use some of his political capital to enact strict gun control legislation.
Obama indicated during the presidential debates that he would pursue an assault weapons ban, which second amendment activists see as merely the first step towards wider gun control regulation.
Obama also indicated that he would attempt to eviscerate the right to keep and bear arms during a White House meeting with gun control advocate Sarah Brady last year. During the meeting, Obama told Brady he was working “under the radar” on new gun control policy. Brady added that Obama assured her gun control was “very much on his agenda.”
The Obama administration’s support for the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), on which final discussions are to take place in March, has also stoked fears that global treaties could be used to curtail the second amendment.
“I have maintained for quite some time that the only true “consumer confidence” statistic one should look at is that of gun sales. The bottom line is people do not hoard guns when they are confident about the future of the country, and gun sales have never been better,” writes Mike Krieger.
Paul Joseph Watson