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Gun shops see surge in business during Coronavirus outbreak

"So we did about 2 months of businesses in about 8 days.”
Posted at 11:24 AM, Apr 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-13 13:24:29-04

MANHATTAN — “People thought they needed guns and ammo like I’ve never seen before. So we did about 2 months of businesses in about 8 days,” said Ted Beardsley, owner of Empire Arms in Manhattan.

Montana’s first reported case of Coronavirus brought a surge of business to this Manhattan gun shop around Mid-March.

“I guess you can compare it to toilet paper, one person thinks I better stock up and their friend feels the same way,” said Beardsley.

“And it just kind of spreads where everyone thinks they need to go get a little ammo and maybe a gun.”

But it’s not all about making money, there’s a downside to the busy times.

“I’m not overly excited about the big burst of activity because looking down the road whether it’s one month or six months. So ammo is out of stock and the prices of gone way up and the more common guns that we would normally have in stock are out of stock for who knows how long.”

In the meantime, gun shops like Empire Arms continue offering their services and are grateful for their essential status.

“I think it’s pretty great that a lot of state governors have acknowledged that the right of self defense is pretty essential,” said Beardsley.