According to the FBI, a full 40 million American adults are estimated to own firearms. This number is higher than any other year. The next highest year was 2019, when 28 million firearms were sold. That’s an increase of 40% from the previous year. The FBI’s NICS Firearm Background Check program calculates this data. The most common types of firearms are pistols, rifles, and shotguns.
In March and January of 2020, gun sales in the US exceeded 2.2 million. In December of 2021, 1.9 million guns were sold. The National Shooting Sports Foundation estimates that more than 21 million firearms will be in circulation in the US by 2021. In the same time period, the FBI carried out more than 39 million background checks, though that data does not directly correspond with gun sales.
According to the study, men are the majority of gun owners, while women make up a smaller percentage. However, gun ownership in America is becoming more diverse as more people of color become gun owners. In 2017, there were 14% more non-White people than white people who owned firearms. In the year 2020, women of color made up almost half of new firearm buyers.
Gun deaths have increased in recent years. In the last five years, the number of firearm-related deaths was higher than that of any war in the US since 1775. In fact, homicide and suicide with firearms have become more common. As a result, the risk of firearms death has increased by over 1.5 million since 1968.
The US has more guns per capita than any other developed nation. However, the numbers show that most of the guns are not registered. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms publishes a list of federally registered firearms by state. The list includes rifles, short-barreled shotguns, silencers, and machine guns. It excludes ordinary pistols and grenades.
The number of American gun owners is highly concentrated. About 22-31% of Americans live in a household that owns firearms, according to a recent Gallup study. That number is based on surveys conducted among gun owners. There are approximately 393 million guns in circulation, according to Gallup.
As a result, the most common reason for purchasing a firearm is self-defense. More than two-thirds of gun owners cite this reason as their number one concern. Other common reasons include hunting, sports shooting, and collecting. Finally, some Americans use their guns for hobbies or for employment.
While gun suicides account for the majority of gun deaths in the US, violent gun deaths are also a big problem. In 2015, there were more than 13,000 gun-related deaths. Of those, 22,000 were gun suicides, while 13,000 were homicides. In addition, more than 1,000 police shootings were committed using a firearm.
In 1978, the FBI traced guns used in crimes in Washington, DC and 18 other large cities. They discovered that most of these guns were purchased in states with less stringent gun laws. Further, most of these guns were cheap Saturday Night Specials, with barrels no longer than three inches.