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NAT’L – RETAILERS – Gun Stores Are Selling Out Of Bullets As Covid-19 Disrupts Ammo Imports

Bullets are hard to come by in the U.S. because demand is outstripping the production capacity of American manufacturers, and importers can’t pick up the slack because coronavirus is disrupting the international supply chain for retail ammunition. U.S. imports of shelf-ready ammunition plunged 34% in the three months ended Aug. 31 compared to the same period in 2019, according to the most recent data from Chris Rogers of S&P Global Market Intelligence Panjiva. Ammunition imports were impacted by Covid-19 shutdowns in Europe, particularly involving manufacturers in Spain, Italy and Eastern Europe, according to Mark Oliva, public affairs director for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the U.S. gun industry group. This does not include imports of ammunition parts and raw materials, which increased during that time, according to Rogers, by 50% in June, by 78% in July and by 107% in August, compared to the year before. Ammo parts and materials are primarily for business-to-business activity between importers and U.S. manufacturers, and disruptions to retail occur when there’s a bottleneck in the manufacturing supply chain. The gun industry just went through its strongest summer ever, amid an economic catastrophe in which tens of millions of workers lost their jobs and gross domestic product plunged by a third. New buyers who feared civil unrest and rising crime during the Covid-19 pandemic bought guns for self-protection and loaded up on ammunition.  [full article]

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