Fear & Loading: Dick’s Stockholders Pay for Its Anti-2A Activism

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posted on August 30, 2018
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Shares of Dick’s Sporting Goods dropped by as much as 10 percent this week, according to Reuters, after the company reported a same-sales-stores drop of 1.9 percent, nearly three times the firm’s prediction of 0.62 percent.  The news service explained earlier this year, “Dick’s was one of the first retailers to stop selling assault rifles and high-capacity magazines as well as bar the sale of guns to people under age 21…” Officials anticipated a slight decrease in hunting gear purchases after the controversial move, but the much-anticipated increase in customer support was so short lived that it failed to improve the 700-store chain’s quarterly report.

Reuters failed to mention the company’s subsequent financial arrangement with gun-control lobbyists, a fact that led Springfield Armory, Hi-Point Firearms, Inland, Mossberg, Hogue and other firearm firms to summarily sever business relationships with the big-box chain. Springfield Armory’s announcement explained, “It is clear where Dick’s Sporting Goods and its subsidiary, Field & Stream, stand on the Second Amendment, and we want to be clear about our message in response. Their position runs counter to what we stand for as a company. At Springfield Armory, we believe in the right and principles fought for and secured by American patriots and our founding forefathers, without question. We will not accept Dick’s Sporting Goods’ continued attempts to deny Second Amendment freedoms to our fellow Americans.” 

Meanwhile Sportsman’s Warehouse, which issued a statement in April that it would not be changing its firearms inventory or sales policy, announced on Aug. 23 that during its second financial quarter of 2018, “Net sales increased by 6.2% to $203.3 million from $191.5 million in the second quarter of fiscal year 2017. Same store sales increased by 0.2% from the comparable prior year period.”

CEO, President and Chairman Jon Baker explained during the report’s conference call [PDF], “Drilling down further on the composition of comparable sales for the second quarter. Firearm units across the company were up 8.3%, better than the adjusted NICS decline of 7.2% for the quarter in the states in which we serve. Our continued outperformance of the industry and market share gains are attributed to our continued investments in assortment expansion, online capabilities and expertise for varying subcategories and all user types as we continue to capitalize on market share opportunities.”

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