American Rifleman | 20 Million Modern Sporting Rifles and Counting
by Guy J. Sagi –
Thursday 19th November 2020
The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) released the 2020 edition of their Firearms Production Report to members this month. Their findings include the fact that civil interest and possession of modern sporting rifles continue to skyrocket. According to the study, an estimated 19.8 million pieces have been manufactured and placed on the market since 1990.
Forty-eight percent of all firearms made in the United States or imported in 2018 were modern sport rifles. Despite the focus on manufacturing, inventories across the country have remained low, and this year’s firearm sales pace has left many retailers with no models for sale.
There are approximately 79.2 million rifle magazines that can circulate 30 or more cartridges – almost all of which are modern sports rifle versions. The potentially life-saving benefit of not having to reload during a criminal encounter is not overlooked by gun owners either. Around 71.2 million pistol magazines that can hold more than 10 cartridges belong to enthusiasts today.
“These numbers, along with the record-breaking 17.2 million NSSF-adjusted background checks for the sale or transfer of a firearm in the first ten months of 2020, show that Americans have a strong desire to continue buying firearms for legitimate purposes,” said he Joe Bartozzi, President and CEO of the NSSF. “The modern sport rifle is still the most popular rifle sold in America. With a circulation of nearly 20 million copies, it is clearly a generally owned firearm that is used daily in America for legitimate purposes. The continued popularity of handguns shows a keen interest among Americans in protecting themselves, their families and homes, and in participating in recreational shooting sports. “
Current estimates put 434 million firearms owned by civilians in the United States. Firearms and ammunition manufacturing had nearly 12,000 employees who produced more than $ 3.9 billion worth of goods in 2018.
The NSSF document figures have been compiled using the latest information available from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in the annual Firearms Manufacture and Export Reports and US International Trade Commission information.