President Barack Obama
President Barack Obama

The Economic Sector Obama’s Policies Have Helped Most? Firearms – OpEd


As I noted a few months ago, President Obama’s economic policies have been widely criticized for slowing the economic recovery; meanwhile, one sector of the economy — firearms — has greatly benefited from the president’s policies.

As this article notes, sales at Sturm Ruger & Co. are up 50% over last year, and sales at Smith & Wesson are up 37.6% from the previous year. The article gives credit for the increase to government stimulus policies, saying, “… the better part of the interest in Ruger firearms likely came from the continuing uncertainty about the extent to which lawmakers will pursue gun-control measures…”

Sales would have been even higher, except that the companies cannot manufacture guns fast enough to satisfy demand. Sturm Ruger says, “Insufficient distributor inventory at December 31, 2012 severely limited the estimated sell-through from independent distributors to retailers in the first half of 2013.”

Imagine the economic growth we would have if our policymakers could figure out equally effective policies to stimulate other sectors of the economy.

Randall G. Holcombe is Research Fellow at The Independent Institute, DeVoe Moore Professor of Economics at Florida State University, past President of the Public Choice Society, and past President of the Society for the Development of Austrian Economics. He received his Ph.D. in economics from Virginia Tech, and has taught at Texas A&M University and Auburn University. Dr. Holcombe is also Senior Fellow at the James Madison Institute and was a member of the Florida Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors.

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