Chairman’s Message: Staying On Top of the Market

Posted by Bill Sumner on 6/3/24 3:48 PM

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There’s been a lot of discussion about the economic effects of consumer spending and consumer confidence lately.  According to one article I read, there have been signs of spending fatigue and a shift from discretionary products to more essential products.  On the contrary, despite the slight decrease in inflation month over month (March to April), recessionary indicators seem to still be looming and yet consumer confidence increased in May.  These are confusing times for not only investors and economists, but the US consumer as well.  Trying to live as you did just a few years ago in a pre-pandemic world is costly today.  The impact of increasing mortgage rates, rising rental costs, escalating grocery bills, are finally catching up to consumers who are now carrying record high household debt into this new year.  What does this mean for our industry and others?  Consumers are going to continue to be price conscious going forward.  Are they still spending, yes, but not at the rate they previously were and acquiring our share of wallet is going to be more of a challenge than in past years.  Large retailers like Walmart, Target, and others are slashing pricing to drive more opportunity.  We too are going to need to stay creative, promotional, and conscious of our inventories.  A question we all need to ask ourselves, is this the same ole’ summer slump or is this a sign of something different, a change in our consumer behavior?

Another area that is impacting our industry heading into November elections, is pending legislation in each state. This is nothing new to our industry, and has been difficult to track in years past. With NASGW’s new Bill Tracker portal, staying on top of these new bills has gotten a lot easier. If you haven’t seen this yet, I encourage you to check it out. This new tool will allow you to track current bills by state that have an impact on the shooting sports industry. If you are selling or shipping products to states with specific restrictions or potential new restrictions, you need to know this. Stay on top of these changes like never before. The NASGW Bill Tracker, powered by Orchid, monitors pending legislation that directly affects the firearms industry, at the Federal and State level. The bills are reflective of the current legislative sessions based on jurisdiction and include defeated, passed and pending bills until the current legislative session ends. This is an exciting new addition to the expended services NASGW has been working on for our members.

June marks the official start of summer so I hope you all get outside and enjoy the warm summer weather. I certainly have been trying to get outside as much as possible.

Until next time,


Bill Sumner

NASGW Chairman


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