Trump presidency bad news for gun stocks, analysts predict

A report published Wednesday predicts a Donald Trump presidency would spell trouble for gun stocks.

Quartz spoke with analysts about their market predictions for trading under a Trump administration and found share prices could drop in the wake of a gun-friendly president.

The news comes amidst booming gun sales across the country as 2016 remains a record-breaking year for the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, with six out of the last nine months raking in more than 2 million checks. The system has processed 19.8 million checks this year so far.

Federal data shows the country’s total number of firearms manufactured has more than tripled since 1986, hitting an all-time high of 10.8 million in 2013, the most recent year for which data is available.

Meanwhile, major gun retailers, including Smith & Wesson, Ruger and Vista Outdoors, reported second quarter profit increases of 20 to 40 percent.

Smith & Wesson declined to comment on the prediction, though a company press release shows gun sales could reach $920 million in 2017.

Chris Krueger, an analyst for Lake Street Capital Markets who covers Smith & Wesson, told Quartz mass shootings and terrorist attacks spur gun purchases.

Meanwhile, some say politics influence gun sales — such as the spikes seen in 2008 and 2012 after President Barack Obama won the White House — while others insist the industry’s growth predates any Democratic administration.

“The media like to focus on politics, and that does appear indeed to be a factor in firearms sales,” Mike Bazinet, spokesman for the National Shooting Sports Foundation told last month. “When people feel that their access to legal products may be prevented or curtailed, they often act. We have seen that with firearms and ammunition sales. However, we have been witnessing growth in the shooting sports for well over a decade and it precedes the current administration.”

Bazinet didn’t comment specifically on the Quartz analysis Wednesday, but reiterated his earlier comments regarding industry trends.

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