US gun sales surge amid fears of violence over presidential election
Gun sales in the United States this year have reached record highs, and more first-time buyers have purchased firearms in recent months ahead of the presidential election, according to estimates from a firearms analytics company.
Americans bought nearly 17 million guns so far in 2020, more than in any other single year, the chief economist of Small Arms Analytics, which produces widely cited estimates of US gun sales.
Gun sales in the US have a tendency to rise during periods of protest and rioting.
Gunmaker Sturm, Ruger CEO Christopher Killoy attributed to rise to calls by activists to "defund the police" in the wake of multiple acts of officer brutality.
"Consumer demand showed no signs of letting up during the quarter as concerns about personal protection and home defence were stoked by civil unrest in some cities around the United States," Killoy said in a statement.
Around the United States, firearm stores have sold out of handguns.
The looming election of Joe Biden is also triggering more
gun sales. Gun enthusiasts are much more likely to build up arsenals when
Democrats are in the White House, because of fears they will institute more
restrictions on firearms.
Gun sales across America have rocketed this year following Covid-related shortages and shutdowns, racial unrest, and political tensions. An estimated that 5 million people are reported to have purchased firearms for the first time, according to industry estimates.
The United States has more guns than people, with the highest per capita gun ownership in the world, an estimated 120.5 guns for every 100 residents.
In 2019, there nearly 36,000 gun deaths in the US, including homicides, suicides and accidents, as well as 27,061 injuries.