State of the Economy: Pulse taken at weekend gun show

Given perhaps that gun show attendees may be a limited reflection of the general population as a whole, but their buying habits are certainly an interesting reflection on the over all status of the economy and their individual situations. For certain the universal talk of a recovering economy was absent.

So, what was selling? Personal protection guns, and lots of ammunition. All the bullet dealers were busy. I saw many a customer toting out full cases of ammo. For hunting? Doubt it, since it is early yet for that sport to drive the selling at a gun show. These were people scared of what is going on around them in their hometowns and neighborhoods. Home invasion break ins are up in some sectors of the state and in small businesses as well. People are not paranoid, they are scared for their families.

One customer stopped at our tables saying just this past Monday night somebody kicked in the back door of his business near the Metro Center in Jackson. Missing on Tuesday morning was all the saws, drills, and other tools of his trade. They ransacked the office stealing two laptop computers, but missed the main business computer. He is still estimating his losses for the insurance.

Lookers were many, but buyers were few. Some toted their own wares to sell at the show. More than a few shoppers were there to raise a few bucks, not to spend much. Those doing some buying were spending money on little items, inexpensive items, impulse buys. Dealers selling hunting rifles, scopes, and such did poorly. People are holding off buying anything extra.

MS Digital Daily
7/15/10