In the Immediate Aftermath of the Vegas Shooting, Gun Stocks Get a Bump

FILE - In this Dec. 9, 2015, file photo, sales associate Mike Conway, right, shows Paul Angulo guns at Bullseye Sport gun shop in Riverside, Calif. Lawmakers passed a package of bills to strengthen California’s already tough gun laws then voters reinforced them by passing even more measures. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

This is actually normal.

In the wake of the horrific Las Vegas shooting, which has left nearly 60 people dead and over 500 injured, stock in gun manufacturers took an upward tick.

From CNN Money:

Shares of Sturm Ruger (RGR) were up 6%, while American Outdoor Brands (AOBC), the company formerly known as Smith & Wesson, gained nearly 7%. Both stocks have tended to rally in the immediate aftermath of mass killings, which sadly have become more routine.

The Pulse nightclub in Orlando in June 2016. San Bernardino in December 2015. The Aurora, Colorado movie theater and Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. in 2012.

Investors had bet that these massacres would lead to tougher gun control laws, especially because of tough talk from President Obama.

So with the realization and desire for self-defense, the market for guns increases.

No, it’s not increasing because of an increase in “bad guys.” It’s increasing because of the desire of citizens to not be victims.

One thing Barack Obama was good for was in increasing gun sales.

As the usual players line up to call for gun control, the same concerns that gripped free citizens during the despicable reign of Obama rears its head again, and the market responds.

Those same stocks dipped with the election of Donald Trump. We can assume because he had the endorsement of the NRA and nobody feared a Trump administration would be a threat to their Second Amendment rights.

It wasn’t just the gun sales numbers, but also FBI background checks that dropped, showing a certain security for gun owners.

So how bad was the dip?

Sturm Ruger said in August that its latest quarterly revenues were down 22% from a year ago and that earnings plummeted more than 50%.

The company said that the main reason for the sales drop was “due to stronger-than-normal demand during most of 2016, likely bolstered by the political campaigns for the November 2016 elections.”

American Outdoor Brands reported a nearly 40% decrease in sales during its latest quarter last month.

Sporting goods outlets also felt the pinch from a more secure public.

Dick’s Sporting Goods saw their shares go down by 50 percent, but after Sunday’s shooting, that number has bumped up by a single percent.

Cabela’s saw a decrease, and Gander Mountain was forced to close several stores after filing for bankruptcy.

This may not be a sustained rise in numbers. We won’t know until we see how persistent and how loud the gun ban advocates will get.