Jan 2022 NICS Report: Gun Sales Drop; But Still 3rd Highest Jan on Record

Lines are 2021 levels of NICS by type
Bars are 2022 levels of NICS by type

U.S.A.-(AmmoLand.com)- The January 2022 National Instant background Check System checks report is out and gun sales have dropped significantly from those in January 2021. In January 2021, the NICS checks were over 4.3 million. In January 2022, they were over 2.0 million (corrected). Gun sales fell from over two million in January of 2021 to over 1.15 million in 2022.

In the historical context of NICS numbers, these are still high. January NICS checks did not break 1 million until after the election of President Barack Obama in November of 2008. January 2009 NICS checks were over 1.2 million.

On a quick survey of the market, using the Internet, firearms are becoming more available, and prices have dropped toward suggested retail. Ammunition is becoming somewhat more available, and prices have dropped somewhat.

Manufacturers of ammunition are running their production at top capacity. Manufacturers of firearms are starting to catch up to demand levels.

It appears there have been approximately 12-15 million new gun purchasers generated in the last two years, as estimated by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF).

A person who is a new gun purchaser may not be a new gun owner. Many people are gifted firearms; many become gun owners through inheritance. Some of those are included in the statistics of new gun buyers. Measuring gun ownership by survey has always been difficult.

It seems likely the number of gun owners in the United States is well over 100 million, perhaps as high as 115 million. Legal gun owners, almost by definition, are eligible voters. They are known to be more politically involved than the ordinary eligible voter. 115 million gun owners would be almost half of all eligible voters, estimated at 239 million. In 2022 the number of privately owned firearms in the United States will be very near to  500 million. The calculated estimate at the end of 2021 was 480 million.

Ammunition capacity has increased by billions of rounds a year and is still not meeting demand. A new primer manufacturing facility, one of the current bottlenecks, is being opened in Texas, at a previous WWII ammunition plant location, near the Arkansas – Texas border.

It is not surprising that polls show support for new gun restrictions at record low levels.

The current chaotic state of the economy, rising crime rates, especially in Democrat strongholds, an unsettled international situation, and exponential increases in the numbers of concealed carry permits, all tend to keep gun and ammunition demand high.

Much of the increase in Concealed Carry Permits are among women and minorities, traditionally considered as Democrat constituencies. High-profile cases are showing the US justice System takes the right to self-defense by minorities seriously.

In spite of Progressive attempts to blame crime and violence on inanimate objects, such as firearms, reality has a way of intruding.

Manmade weapons have defined the difference between the animal kingdom and humans for the entire history of mankind. If they did not work, they would not be here.

It appears the United States has had a steep increase in firearms ownership and demand. It will continue, at a somewhat slower pace.

People will not vote to give up their arms unless they feel themselves to be secure. The New Deal push for gun control died with the start of World War II.

About Dean Weingarten:

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of Constitutional Carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and retired from the Department of Defense after a 30 year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

Dean Weingarten

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The focus at gun shows out here has been on ammo and reloading components, reloading equipment for quite some time. Folks are looking for deals on guns and the unique or purpose built but prices are high. We collectors are sitting on our cash. The Harris/Biden regime will tank the economy soon and then the deals will appear,


price of primers is still stupid high bought a case of magnum pistol (5000) while trump was president 123 and some change shipping included no hazmat , im not paying that for 1000 five times the money no way if need be I can reload primers too!




I think the reason gun sales are down is because hardly anything is out there and what is available is to damn expensive. In addition to that why would you buy a gun that you can’t get ammo for. Go to Sportsmans warehouse and look for a quality brand six shooter. Ammo is just now starting to become available, but prices are still not even close to what they were. A box of CCI blazer was 13 bucks and now it is down to 18 or more. CCI 41 primers were below one hundred for a 1,000 and you can’t… Read more »


The sales have settled some, but most owning guns now are waiting for ammo supplies to catch up and prices to drop some, got a call from my reloader, he finally is able to get primers to reload my 1000 round of 38spl’s, been waiting for over18mos!!!!!


I apologize for the drop in purchases. I was just grabbing another gear…….