MERICA: Ammunition, Guns Continue to Sell Out in Historic “Panic Buy”
Guns and ammunition continue to consistently sell out between physical and online retailers, with some businesses unable to provide commonly used calibers of ammunition on account of the high demand from Americans and shortages in the supply chain as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Gun and ammunition aggregator Wikiarms lists the cheapest price available for .223/5.56 NATO ammunition- the cartridge used in standard AR-15 rifles- as 45 cents per round, with most major online gun retailers selling the cartridge for well more than 50 cents per round.
American-made .223 ammunition was selling at most major physical and online retailers for as little as 35 cents per round before the coronavirus pandemic.
Disruption of global ammunition manufacturing has also played a key role in starving gun owners of buying ammo. Lead production in the United States has already left the country, and copper mining in South America remains halted due to the coronavirus pandemic. Gun owners trying to acquire ammunition at retail stores has consistently reported encountering empty shelves, and some gun retailers have reported being unable to sell any ammunition to new gun buyers to use for their firearm.
Gun sales in March, May and June have exploded relative to gun sales in 2019, with new purchases almost doubling their 2019 equivalent during the months. Firearm retailers have reported to the National Shooting Sports Foundation that 40% of their sales in recent months have been to new firearm owners.
Guns and ammunition may only increase in price, fueled by exorbitant demand as more Americans seek to arm themselves, many for the first time, as more civil unrest appears imminent on the horizon.