Well the numbers are in and they are…well…record breaking.
Americans, despite what many would have you believe, like guns and they are buying them in record numbers. December 2015 saw over 3.3 million NICS checks performed by the FBI. That is over a million more than were performed in December of 2014 and half a million more than the Sandy Hook inspired run in 2012.
All told there were over 23 million NICS checks performed in 2015. That is over 2 million more than were performed in 2014 (the previous record year) and 2.2 million more than 2015.
With Obama’s New Year’s Morning announcement of unilateral gun control through executive order I am sure the sales trend is carrying forward into 2016. Which follows a general trend. Overall, yearly firearm sales under the current administration have been, on average, 34% higher than under any previous president.
Now the obligatory disclaimer: NICS checks do not directly correlate with firearms purchases. There is one check per purchase not one per firearm so many checks cover the purchase of more than one firearm. Not all NICS result in an OK to purchase. Many states do not require NICS checks for those with valid carry permits. The number of NICS checks is generally several percentage points lower than the number of firearms actually purchased.