U.S. imports of handguns and long guns surged by 60% in 2020 compared to the previous year and supplied more than a quarter of the nation’s demand for firearms, according to an analyst group’s Monday report.
The U.S. imported 6.4 million handguns and long-guns in 2020, compared to the 4 million in 2019, Small Arms Analytics and Forecasting announced. The plurality of these types of firearms came from Turkey – which exported 1,478,464 – as well as Austria with 1,284,785 and Brazil with 1,016,630, the SAAF said. Other top countries include Croatia, Italy, Germany, the Czech Republic and China.
The SAAF data excludes muzzleloaders and military weapons.
Meanwhile, 3.455 billion munitions were imported in 2020, and largely came from Russia – which tops the charts with 765,487,845 units – Mexico, Italy, the Czech Republic, Brazil, Serbia, South Korea and Hungary, among others, the SAAF found.
The SAAF said the surge in gun imports “is in line with last year’s demand surge.” Around 23 million guns were sold in 2020, with U.S. imports supplying 28% of the firearm demand, gun groups said.
Meanwhile, the National Shooting Sports Foundation estimated that there were more than 8.4 million legal first-time gun buyers in 2020. Earlier this month, Smith & Wesson attributed its 102% third-quarter jump in sales to a flood of first-time buyers.
The Springfield, Mass., company’s third-quarter sales were $257.6 million compared with the $127.4 million the company raked in during the same period in 2019.
"Over the past year, millions of our fellow Americans from all walks of life have chosen to empower themselves by exercising their 2nd Amendment rights for the first time," President and Chief Executive Officer Mark Smith said in Thursday's earnings release. "Our loyal employees have risen to the challenge – delivering over 1.8 million units in the first three quarters of our fiscal year alone, ensuring that these new members of the shooting sports community were able to choose the highest quality, innovative firearms that Smith & Wesson has been known for since 1852."