Why gun stocks soared after Obama's win

In a repeat of 2008, traders anticipated an increase in firearm sales after the election.

By Kim Peterson Nov 8, 2012 2:41AM
Updated 12:25 p.m. ET

In a reaction that surprised absolutely no one, investors rushed into gun stocks after President Barack Obama's win, expecting firearm sales to soar soon.

Gun makers Smith & Wesson Holding (SWHC) and Sturm Ruger (RGR) rose sharply Wednesday in a repeat of sorts of the response to Obama's first presidential victory in 2008. The stocks were up again in Thursday's trading. Gun stocks have performed well over the four years of Obama's term. Sturm Ruger, for example, rose from $7.04 on Election Day in 2008 to $50 Thursday.
But investors think the stocks have farther to go, propelled by fears that Obama will crack down on guns in his second term.

Sturm Ruger shares rose 6.8% Wednesday and another 4.8% Thursday. Smith & Wesson shares rose 9.6% Wednesday and another 3.8% Thursday. By comparison, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX) fell nearly 2.4% Wednesday and was down slightly Thursday.Ruger pistols © Getty Images

The National Rifle Association certainly contributed to fears of expanded gun control in Obama's second term. "An anti-gun Supreme Court, a U.N. Arms Trade Treaty, and a sweeping gun ban aren't just a possibility in a second Obama term," the association's CEO, Wayne LaPierre, wrote on the group's website. "They're a near certainty."

But Obama hasn't taken much action on gun control. In fact, he signed legislation allowing loaded guns into national parks and on Amtrak trains. Still, in the second presidential debate, Obama mentioned the possibility of keeping automatic weapons out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill.

"Part of it is seeing if we can get an assault weapons ban reintroduced, but part of it is also looking at other sources of the violence, because frankly, in my hometown of Chicago, there’s an awful lot of violence, and they’re not using AK-47s, they’re using cheap handguns," he said.

That comment may have triggered a consumer fear that gun sales will see tighter regulations. In October, the number of federal background checks on potential gun buyers rose 10.6% from the month before to 1.61 million, according to the FBI.

More from MSN Money

Nov 8, 2012 1:15PM

While the NRA (of which I am a member) may stoke fears in gun owners it is not irrational to ear what Obama could do in a second term. The article says "but Obama hasn't taken much acion on gun control. Of course not, he still needed to get reelected. The NRA was talking of a second term which Obama hadn't been reelected for yet. Now he is free to do whatever he likes.


I don't like the "poo pooing" of the fears of gun owners. It is not any more irrational to fear sweeping gun control than Pro Choice supporters feared abortion being made illegal. Abortion is going nowhere because it is a popular right. Guns are feared and hated by alot of people who wold just assume they all be banned. Senator Boxer said so herself in an interview. She was asked something along the lines of getting a Democrat majority in Congress and enacting sweeping legislation and she stated yes, "Mr. and Mrs. America...turn 'em in" as she flinched her fingers in a gimme motion.


The Supreme Court only narrowly...by ONE vote...upheld the language and purpose of the Second Amendement. Obama will likely appoint at least one justice and possibly as many as three. How do you think another vote would go on that? We also have that Small Arms Trade Treaty in the UN that is still lurking in a dark corner. That is not going away.

Nov 8, 2012 1:15PM

Obama is NOT going to ban guns at all. Just a commercial trick by the NRA who is in cahoots with the gun manufacturers.

Nov 8, 2012 1:15PM
Only one gun law is needed, a fellon in possession of a gun does 25 yrs no parole.
Nov 8, 2012 1:14PM
people who go out and buy alot of guns and ammo should be red flagged and watched around the clock...THE ECONOMY is slowly coming back,jobs are coming back, property values are coming back up!!! HELLO, is anybody home ???? when obama took his oath the first time that week 800,000 jobs were lost !!800,000!!!! not a typo.....unemployment dipped under 8.0% last week 150,000 jobs were added!!! is this thing on!!! home sales are on the rise!!! OMG...you people ca'nt be that stupid...karl rove and his henchmen sunk close to 400 million for this election to lose!!! THE REPUBLICAN PARTY IS DEAD!!!!! people are sick and tired of your lies!!!when obama leaves the country in good standing again(like when clinton left) a republican will not come in and muck it up again(like G.W.) !!!!   BOOM ,as i drop my microphone.....
Nov 8, 2012 1:14PM
America should be more concerned that Obama and Hillary are working now to remove 80% of all our nuclear and other weaponry from our nation's defense supply.  What's next, an open invitation for our enemies to come and get us because we will be defenseless. That appears to be Obama's plan.
Nov 8, 2012 1:14PM

The picture with the article looks like Iranians celebrating the killing of Americans.

Fear tactics?

Irresponsible behavior is on the rise so what people need is more firearms???


Nov 8, 2012 1:14PM
4 years ago we had a surge like this, too! During second debate, Obama & Romney were both asked: what will you do about taking guns off the street  & out of the wrong hands?  Romney said that all single women who are pregnant, need to get married. Obama said that through education and opportunities, people will choose books & college over guns & gangs. I own 2 pistols for the protection of my home in the case of a home invasion. I don't see the need to be afraid of the current administration, as they did nothing to make me give up my guns during the last 4 years.
Nov 8, 2012 1:13PM
The  only way to reduce the number of guns in the US would be to make potential gun buyers pass an IQ test. That would reduce the number of guns by at least 95%.
Nov 8, 2012 1:12PM

 The 2nd Amendment is there, it cannot be ignored by anyone, any attempt to strip people of their guns will prompt an immediate and large outcry, with resulting court cases.  The only way for us to lose our guns is for the 2nd Amendment to be repealed, and there is not a chance in hell that will happen, in fact, a lot of DEMs and liberals have guns and enjoy hunting, the 2nd Amendment is safe.


Not true... After his historical and hysterical vote for ObummerCare justice Kennedy also said that the second amendment does not protect the right of commom citizens to own guns. He was opening the door for Obummer again.

Nov 8, 2012 1:12PM
Huh........so ridiculous. The paranoid right wingers militia and thugs need their guns. Legitimate hunting is one thing..........but I have a feeling most of these sales have nothing to do with hunting.
Nov 8, 2012 1:12PM

Let's see, troops pulled out of Iran, & soon to come home from Afghanistan.  That's going to put a crimp in the number of firearms the manufacturers will sell.  Hey, let's claim there's going to be a ban on firearms "someday", & improve those sales figures!

No ban.  Not now, not ever.  Would you want to tell retailers supplied with lots of guns & ammo you're going to take the food off their families' tables?  How do you think they'll react?

Nov 8, 2012 1:11PM
I believe that they need to start gun control at the top, lead by example.

Lets see the Secret Service give up their guns first.

Nov 8, 2012 1:10PM
If you gun nitwits were any dumber you could get SS disability for being developmentally disabled.  Fools.  Your guns won't give you any comfort when you wake up in hell one day. 
Nov 8, 2012 1:09PM

I wonder:


For every time a gun is used for bona fide protection, how many accidental deaths and injuries occur?

Nov 8, 2012 1:09PM
the only people hurt by strict gun laws are law abiding citizens.  criminals will get guns when they want to, they always have and always will be able to.  its only the regular joe blow who obeys the law that is going to have a hard time buying a gun if laws are tightened. 
Nov 8, 2012 1:09PM
I believe in gun control. 

-Aim center mass

-Double tap

-Repeat if target is still moving

Nov 8, 2012 1:09PM
Keeping the guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill, is much like trying to keep drugs out of the hands of junkies...  

Nov 8, 2012 1:08PM
Funny, I just finished my firearms training, so I can apply for the pistol permit. Our instructor recalled that when Obama was elected four years ago, they saw a significant spike in demand for guns. In general, their best years in terms of sales were the last four. People do fear that gun laws will be tougher, although it doesn't get tougher than in New York or CT and Mass. 
Nov 8, 2012 1:07PM

We should not arm ourselves because of the Obama re-election. We should arm ourselves for the future against racist thinking minds and white supremists who believe the USA needs to be cleaned. They only want White and English speaking people. They love slaves and low paid workers but don't want them living in the US. People, we have to watch these kind of people and know who they are. Get to know the area and people you live with. I am white skinned and Latino and I have had many encounters at places where I hear whites say ... N.I gga this and Mexicans that, send em back to Africa and Mexico. They speak without knowing I am Latino and it does bother because I know those are the haters and the people who will hurt you when the time comes. A Revolution will happen one day and Barack Obama will save us from these ignorant stupid thinking people that are Hitlers in disguise.

Nov 8, 2012 1:06PM

That must mean Obama should watch his back.

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