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U.S. firearms imports, January through September 1988.

U.S. Firearms Imports, January through September 1988

Between 1973 and 1987 (both years included), more than fity countries exported about 11.3 million firearms to the United States. Of this total, 38% percent were handguns, 31% were rifles and 31% were shotguns. However, corresponding percent figures--42%, 36% and 22%-- for just the year 1987 represent a truer picture of imports by gun type for the most recent years of the studied period.

More strikingly, for the first nine months of 1988, the distribution is 52% handguns, 34% rifles and 14% shotguns. If these proportions hold even roughly in the remaining three months of 1988, handguns will constitute a higher percentage in the final 1988 figures than they have in any previous year in the 1973-1988 period. (In the foregoing, rifle-shotgun combination guns are not included because they aggregate a negligible fraction of one percent.)

The accompanying graph, which portrays fifteen years of U.S. firearm imports, also reveals dramatic new highs for firearm imports in 1985, 1986 and 1987. Total firearm imports for the first nine months of 1988 were 856,570. This figure suggests the full year 1988 will equal or exceed the most recent high years (1.2 million in 1986 and 1.1 million in 1987).

The 856,570 partial year 1988 total is comprised of 445,405 handguns, 292,570 rifles, 118,268 shotguns and 327 combination guns coming from 31 countries which are arrayed in the accompanying table.

Table : U.S. Firearm Imports by Country of Origin January through September 1988
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Author:Howe, Walter J.
Publication:Shooting Industry
Date:Feb 1, 1989
Previous Article:Getting a grip on handguns.
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