After hitting an all-time high in December, background checks run through the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) have declined year-over-year for the first time since October 2011 as fervor over the Sandy Hook shooting and the government’s push for new gun controls seems to be waning, the Washington Times reports.
The 1.3 million checks run through the FBI’s system in June are less than half of the 2.7 million in December, and are about 20,000 less than Jun 2012. NICS checks spiked by nearly 500,000 in November compared to the previous year, cracking the 2 million mark for the first time. In December, they increased by more than 900,000.
While NICS checks are not a perfect correlation to gun sales (some checks are performed on active concealed carry permits, among other non-sale actions), the number of checks is a fairly decent proxy for the number of guns sold.