The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) reported the FBI conducted a record-breaking number of National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) checks on Black Friday.
NSSF said FBI NICS completed 214,913 background checks on Black Friday - the highest number recorded for the most popular shopping day of the year, besides Cyber Monday. It noted the figure also includes background checks for other firearms-related purposes, such as approvals for concealed carry permits. Recall that NICS data is a proxy for gun sales because there is no national database tracking firearm purchases.
Last week's 214,913 background checks surpassed 192,749 on Black Friday 2022, 187,585 NICS checks on Black Friday 2021, and 186,645 checks on Black Friday 2020.
From Nov. 18 through Black Friday, a total of 680,671 background checks were run by the FBI, down slightly from last year's figure of 711,372 for the same period.
"The background checks reported by the FBI are in keeping with the trends NSSF has seen throughout the year. Firearm sales remain consistently strong, with over a million per month for more than four years running," explained Joe Bartozzi, NSSF President and CEO.
Bartozzi continued, "These figures tell us that there is a continued strong appetite for lawful firearm ownership by law-abiding Americans and that firearm manufacturers across the country continue to deliver the quality firearms our customers have come to expect."
Notice how Smith & Wesson shares track NICS data?
On a seasonal basis over the last 15 years, NICS checks increased through the end of the year.
NSSF explained why: "Annual background check data shows that firearm sales will typically rise during the final months of the year coinciding with hunting seasons and holiday sales."
We wonder how many 2A-loving, law-abiding Americans used 'buy now, pay later' services to fund their Black Friday firearm and ammo-buying sprees.