Gun magazines soar; fashion and celeb titles slide

The surging interest in firearms is carrying over to publications that cover them, while women and stargazers get their fixes online.

By Jonathan Berr Aug 8, 2013 9:08AM
Guns & Ammo August 2013 cover (© Guns & Ammo via Facebook)People are showing a growing interest in guns and less interest in fashion and celebrities.

At least that's the conclusion you can reach from data released by Alliance for Audited Media, according to Adweek.

Circulation at American Rifleman and America's 1st Freedom, which people get when they join the National Rifle Association, rose 14% to 1.9 million and 8% to 545,019, respectively, in the first half of 2013. Two similar publications, Handguns and Guns & Ammo, saw their sales rise 16% to 137,648 and 7% to 416,224, respectively. These results are a bright spot as overall magazine circulation fell 1% in the first half, while newsstand sales plunged 10%.

The readership increase for gun magazines highlights the surging interest in firearms that was prompted by fears, so far groundless, that more restrictions would be placed on the ability of people to buy shotguns, rifles and ammunition, particularly in light of the elementary school massacre in Newton, Conn.

Sturm Ruger (RGR), the largest publicly traded U.S. firearms maker, recently reported its highest quarterly sales since 1990. The company's annual profit last year hit a 25-year high. Sales at Smith & Wesson (SWHC) surged 38% in the most recent quarter.

Celebrity news also isn't the draw on newsstands that it was just a few years ago. The success of sites such as and Radar Online are partly to blame. During the first half of the year, People, US Weekly and the National Enquirer each reported double-digit declines when measured by single-copy sales. Women's interest and fashion magazines such as Cosmopolitan, Glamour and O, the Oprah Magazine also took a hit.

Funny thing about celebrity news, though: People can't seem to get enough of it. The Guardian, a U.K. newspaper, made headlines recently when it provided a readers a filter to avoid news about the royal baby. However, Slate pointed out that the most-viewed stories on the Guardian site were about that same royal baby.

Jonathan Berr does not own shares of the listed stocks. Follow him on Twitter @jdberr.

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Aug 8, 2013 9:48AM
wonder why gun sales and interest in guns is soaring? duh, when people cannot trust their government, what do you think they turn too.  many, many people believe their government is out to disarm them completely leaving you-know-who completely armed.  not a good scenario in my book.
Aug 8, 2013 9:57AM
I am well armed and I will protect my property and my family with any means necessary.
Aug 8, 2013 9:58AM
Jesus is returning soon! trust in GOD, but keep your powder dry ! USMC
Aug 8, 2013 10:16AM

Liberal Agenda = "surging interest in firearms that was prompted by fears, so far groundless"


Trust the Lord, fear your Government.

Aug 8, 2013 10:09AM

This doesn't surprise me in the least bit! When I'm in the market for a new car or expensive appliance, I do my research and consult the experts. What better way that to pick up a few enthusiast magazines!

This just shows me that more and more people are willing to purchase firearms and doing the research to find out what's right for them!

Aug 8, 2013 10:23AM
"The readership increase for gun magazines highlights the surging interest in firearms that was prompted by fears, so far groundless, ". . . . . . . . .

Well it hasn't been for lack of trying on the gun banners part. The only reason we can still buy guns and ammo is because a lot of our legislators have some knowledge of the constitution and the amendments, unlike BO.

Aug 8, 2013 10:38AM
The comment " so far groundless," in the fourth paragraph is deceiving. There have been numerous attempts to take away our right to bear arms, and the assault continues on a daily basis. The first time an attempt is ignored will allow success on the progressive side. The scariest thing is listening to elected officials, including our vice-president, who talk but show their complete ignorance. And these people have the power to strip me of my constitutional rights. They never mention actual facts or statistics of gun ownership or use, just a 'feel good'  load of nonsense on disarming everyone.
Aug 8, 2013 10:27AM
i guess people figure  a fashion star is not much protection when someone breaks into your  house . at least if you buy  guns  you are keeping  someone  working in THE USA
Aug 8, 2013 10:20AM

With the way everything looks right now, shaky economy, special interest trying to rein in on guns and make worthless laws that help criminals, and all of DC being completely clueless and bowing down to which ever corporate master throws them the most money, and that same government spying on citizens left and right in the name of security, don't be surprised that average Americans are taking note and in some small way trying to make themselves a little prepared for worst case scenarios. Unless we right the ship and fast, this trend is just going to continue. Very sad. We can fix the problem but to many idiots in the way at this point. And these idiots are on both sides of the isle, doesn't matter what party they belong to, all are responsible for the mess we are in.


I think its time

Aug 8, 2013 11:19AM
How can this article claim that fears to disarm are "groundless"? The democrats and Obama pushed hard, though failed, to enact draconian gun laws which would ban most standard magazines, most firearms, place criminal and civil liability on citizens for the mere premise of owning a firearm (the notorious $250,000 minimum insurance policy), assault weapons ban, ammo ban/restriction, ban online guns and ammo, etc. No the fears of Obama and his minions disarming us are NOT GROUNDLESS! Americans are flocking to guns because it is our only equalizer against government oppression. More guns=more freedom!
Aug 8, 2013 11:02AM
GOOD...The way it should be.  People caring about taking care of their families and less worthless Hollyweird bull crap!  All those "stars" are hypocrites and full of BS anyway.  Just waiting for the big earthquake so that worthless state falls into the ocean. 
Aug 8, 2013 10:56AM
Don't buy health insurance , buy more guns.
Aug 8, 2013 11:11AM
With an Elected Government that does not read the Bills or Laws that  they impose on us and taxation without representation, you would be a Damn Fool not to own your own arsenal !!!
Aug 8, 2013 11:09AM
Remember your government provided protection is AFTER the fact or not at all.  If government provided protection was pre-emptive then there would be no crime.  Think about it.   Better to be armed then at the mercy of criminals and a government that does nothing until AFTER the crime is committed and it's too late. 
Aug 8, 2013 11:08AM
When more and more "have-nots" (abetted by White House statements that the successful didn't do it without gov't help)  decide to take from the "haves", those that have armed themselves will be better prepared than those who can only call "911".  And, as it has been stated in several foregoing comments, the "so far groundless" comment was not that the gun banners didn't try...and still are. 
Aug 8, 2013 10:59AM
uh hmmm SO WHAT! run! liberal run! liberty,pursuit of happiness,yeah , I'll buy that,and a gun to go along with it .
Aug 8, 2013 11:05AM
If ya hunt A little bit ya can find AR-15 30 round mags for around $11
Aug 8, 2013 11:01AM

One does not have to wonder why this is one just has to wake up.

Aug 8, 2013 11:38AM

"Groundless"  Ahhh, I'm pretty sure gun rights were restricted in several states and other communities.  Get your facts straight MSN you liberal rag POS

Aug 8, 2013 12:02PM
Peoples' fears were "groundless"?  Hardly.  Peoples' fears were very much justified by the proposed anti-gun legislation & only because the people contacted their elected representatives & made their voices heard did that legislation fail to pass.
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