Fear that President Obama might ban — or highly tax — certain kinds of weapons and ammunition led to rocketing sales over the past year, leaving many stores with a shortage of popular ammo, and blasting prices through the roof. Now, however, the market has begun to stabilize, as more supplies come on line, and short-term concerns about gun laws have eased.
The Star-Telegram reports that, at least in Texas (where they know a thing or two about guns), prices have started coming down and bullets have begun showing up on store shelves again.
In a typical week last year, [retailer DeWayne] Irwin said he would order — and receive — 50 cases of 9 mm ammunition. He places the same order now and “we’re lucky to get three cases,” he said. “But a month ago, we would be lucky to get one case.” Said [gun expert Alan] Korwin, “Now, almost a year later, it’s easing up. Prices are dropping almost daily, supplies are coming in, demand is lowering and stores are cutting back on orders.”
The situation hasn’t pleased gun-control advocates. As The Wall Street Journal reports:
“Obama is the best thing that has happened to [the gun industry] in years,” [Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence] said. “Their scare tactics before the election turned out to be a total flop politically but great for business.” And, he noted, the Obama administration has – so far at least – given gun owners very little to worry about. “What they proposed during the campaign was moderate and they haven’t even made any signs off doing those things,” Helmke said. “We have been frustrated with Obama’s and Congress’ unwillingness to even talk about the gun issue.”
Advocates do, however, see victory in their sights. According to the Journal, Hemke “expects the administration to do more later in its term. He also thinks that the current rush in sales can largely be sales attributed to an entrenched group of people who already have personal arsenals, noting that ;while the number of guns [in circulation] is going up, the percentage of households owning them is going down.'”