Firearm, Ammunition Stocks Soar in Wake of Texas School Shooting

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Shares of a number of firearm and ammunition manufacturers have risen sharply since the deadly mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, on May 24.

Smith & Wesson Brands stock rose 8.4 percent in the two days following the shooting incident which left 19 children and two adults dead, according to The Washington Post.

Shares of Sturm, Ruger & Co., the largest U.S. gun manufacturer by market cap, jumped about 5.7 percent, and ammunition maker Olin 3.8 percent. Meanwhile, Ammo Inc. stock surged more than 12 percent in the wake of the shooting.

Elsewhere, stocks of ammunition maker Vista Outdoor jumped 9 percent to $38.24 the day after the shooting, while American Outdoor Brands rose 6 percent to $11.12, according to The New York Post.

The rise in stock price comes amid renewed calls for gun control measures such as enhanced background checks and laws around storing weapons.

It also suggests that investors anticipate sales to rise as customers flock to gun stores to purchase new weapons and stock up on ammunition before tighter gun control legislation is potentially introduced.

A similar phenomenon with regards to a rise in the stock prices of gunmakers took place 2016, when Smith & Wesson jumped 20 percent after a gunman killed 49 people at an Orlando nightclub, according to The Washington Post.

In 2019, following mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, which prompted former President Donald Trump to advocate stricter background check laws, stock prices of gunmakers also saw a boost.

Shares of gun makers also rose ahead of the 2020 presidential election when then-Democratic candidate Joe Biden was shown to be leading in the polls amid the prospect of stricter gun regulation.

“The typical hypothesis is that this is an exogenous shock, unanticipated, and as a result of a mass shooting, the reaction is there is an expectation that legislative steps will be undertaken to potentially restrict ammunition, access to guns,” Brian Marks, the executive director of the University of New Haven’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation Program, told the Washington Examiner.

Biden condemned gun laws in America in a White House address a day after the Uvalde, while calling on lawmakers to “stand up to a very powerful” gun lobby.

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