Gun stocks jump after Orlando mass shooting

Orlando shooter legally attained rifle in Florida
Posted at 3:36 PM, Jun 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-14 17:45:35-04

The price of stocks in gun manufacturers jumped Monday morning, the day after the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.


The jump in price is believed to be connected as investors anticipate an increase in weapons purchases.


Smith & Wesson Holdings Corp., which makes pistols and revolvers, peaked at $23.40 per share first thing Monday morning when markets opened in the U.S. The $2 per share increase from Friday evening accounted was a near 9 percent increase. The price was back down to $21.71 per share by Tuesday afternoon.


Sturm, Ruger & Co., which makes semi-automatic rifles and single-shot shotguns, peaked at $63.36 per share on Monday morning, up from $57.47 on Friday evening. The stock was back down to below $60 per share by Tuesday afternoon.


A spokesperson for CMMG, the manufacturer of the AR-15, one of the weapons used in the Orlando shooting, told CNN Money last month that attempts to ban semi-automatic weapons, sometimes described as "assault rifles," leads to an increase in AR-15 sales.


"Our sales are definitely going to skyrocket [if Hillary Clinton] is elected along with any AR-15," said CMMG spokesperson Mike O'Dell to CNN. "That's the kind of mentality in America: 'You're telling me I can't have that? Well, I want one more, now.'"


Automatic machine guns are already heavily regulated, but now some members of Congress are renewing efforts to ban or limit more kinds of semi-automatic weapons as well. In the past, sales of guns have gone up after a mass shooting amid fear that new laws would limit the ability to make those purchases in the future.


Right now, buying a semi-automatic rifle like the one used to kill 49 people at an Orlando nightclub isn't too difficult.


You have to be at least 18, a legal resident of the United States and you have to pass a background check.


Among issues that disqualify a sale are felony convictions, documented mental health issues, multiple DUIs, drug convictions or a history of domestic violence.


Omar Mateen, 29, of Fort Pierce, was a concealed weapons permit holder who legally bought the AR-15 he used in the nightclub shootings.


"An evil person came in here and legally purchased firearms from us and if he hadn't purchased them from us, I'm sure he would have gotten them from another local gun store in the area," said Fort Pierce Shooting Center Owner Ed Henson to ABC Action News on Monday.


Florida does have a three-day waiting period for handgun sales and buyers have to be 21 or over, but rifles can be sold immediately.