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September 2021 Saw Second-Most Background Checks of Any September in History

September 2021 witnessed the second-most background checks of any September since the inception of National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) checks for retail firearm sales.

FBI figures show there were 2,626,389 NICS checks conducted in September, second only to the 2,892,115 conducted in September 2020.

Breitbart News reported a similar story regarding August 2021 NICS checks, as FBI figures showed 2,715,223 NICS checks were conducted during August 2021. That was second only to the 3,115,063 NICS checks conducted in August 2020.

July 2021 provided a similar scenario. There were 2,882,676 NICS checks conducted in July 2o21, second only to the 3,639,224 conducted in July 2020.

There were record NICS checks for 17 straight months, January 2020 through May 2021, with each of those 17 months breaking every previous record for NICS checks in that respective month.

“May 2021 proved to be the 17th consecutive month of record background checks for firearm sales and transfers… FBI figures show that 3,222,105 NICS checks were performed in May 2021, breaking the previous record of 3,091,455, set in 2020.”


— NRA (@NRA) June 4, 2021

In other words, January 2020 saw more NICS checks than any previous January, February 2020 saw more than any previous February, March 2020 more than any previous March, and so on, all the way through May 2021.

NICS checks do not provide a precise measurement of the number of guns sold, and that is because the background check is provided on the purchaser rather than the gun. And upon passing a background check, a purchaser may purchase multiple guns.

Moreover, some states regularly perform checks on concealed carry permit holders in an effort to keep watch on possible criminal behavior.

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Instagram: @awr_hawkins. Reach him at You can sign up to get Down Range at

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