In a year of job losses, foreclosures, and bag lunches, bullets sometimes sell faster than factories can make them, reports the Washington Post. Gun owners have bought an estimated 12 billion rounds of ammunition in the past year, up from 7 billion to 10 billion in a normal year. That has happened at a time when the two concerns that usually make people buy guns and bullets — crime and increased gun control — seem less threatening than usual.
The explanation for the run on bullets lies partly in economics: Once rounds were scarce, people hoarded them, which made them scarcer. In the last 12 months, gun shops sold enough bullets to give every American 38 of them. “We’ve had people buy ammunition for calibers they don’t even have the gun for: ‘Oh, I want to get this gun eventually. And when I get it, ammunition may be hard to get,’ ” said Michael Tenny, who runs Cheaper Than Dirt, a Fort Worth-based Internet sporting goods store.