TABLE 9-1 Firearms Manufactured in and Exported from the United States, 2002–2004

Firearms

2002

2003

2004*

Manufactured

Handguns

1,088,584

1,121,024

1,022,610

Pistols

741,514

811,660

728,511

Revolvers

347,070

309,364

294,099

Rifles

1,515,286

1,430,324

1,325,138

Shotguns

741,325

726,078

731,769

Miscellaneous

21,700

30,978

19,508

Total

3,366,895

3,308,404

3,099,025

Exported

Handguns

56,742

42,864

39,081

Pistols

22,555

16,340

14,959

Revolvers

34,187

26,524

24,122

Rifles

60,644

62,522

62,403

Shotguns

31,897

29,537

31,025

Miscellaneous

1,473

6,989

7,411

Total

150,756

141,912

139,920

*The cover sheet for the 2004 report indicates that 26 percent of manufacturers did not file reports for 2004. No such response or compliance rates are indicated in the 2002 and 2003 reports.

SOURCE: Data from Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives Annual Firearms Manufacturing and Export Reports, 2002–2004.

are handguns; rifles are the modal category, constituting 35–40 percent of annual domestic firearms production. Relatively few of these firearms—only about 150,000—are exported from the United States. By comparison, tabulations from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Foreign Trade Division (see Thurman, 2006) indicate that 844,866 handguns were imported to the United States in 2004, most from Austria (29 percent), Brazil (24 percent), and Germany (17 percent). Nearly twice as many handguns were imported to the United States as rifles (489,740); an additional 71,625 shotguns and combination guns were imported in 2004 (Thurman, 2006).

However, the enabling action for entry in a national RBID is not the production of a firearm or its arrival in the United States; rather, it is the sale of a firearm. The previously cited firearms manufacture statistics do not directly correspond to annual sales to individual customers; they include production for military and law enforcement purposes, and they include guns that may sit in inventory rather than be quickly sold. The ATF estimates about 4.5 million “new firearms, including approximately about 2 million handguns, are sold in the United States” each year (U.S. Bureau



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