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Fear & Loading: August NICS Checks Set Monthly Record

Fear & Loading: August NICS Checks Set Monthly Record

The FBI has finally posted its NICS background check figures for August, and it’ll probably surprise more than a few pundits. A total of 1,925,146 were processed, shattering the previous record for the month set only last year at 1,853,815. Each one of the requests doesn’t necessarily reflect a firearm purchase, but the figures do provide a rough barometer of overall sales.

Kentucky led the charge with 394,718. That makes the eighth month this year the state has exceeded 300,000 NICS checks. California claimed August’s runner-up honors with 130,901. Illinois took third with 126,901.

On the other side of the spectrum, 80 originated from the District of Columbia. That figure’s up from July’s 68, although still roughly half of Guam’s 159.

Annual NICs check numbers to date seem to agree with predictions we’re in a “new norm” in firearm industry growth. With four months to go, the number processed in 2017 stands are 16,268,794, probably not close enough to even jeopardize last-year’s record of 27,538,673.

This year, however, is poised to eclipse 2015 for second place. The FBI conducted a total of 23,141,970 NICs checks that year, and with the next four months averaging around 2 million each (actually quite a bit higher in November and December), 2017 is strategically positioned to overtake the runner up in the stretch.


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