Earlier this year, CBS News spotlighted a growing shortage of .22-caliber ammunition. “One of the most popular and common” — and cheapest — calibers of ammo for hunters and target shooters alike, CBS reports that .22 shells are in short supply these days. Interviewing one supplier, CBS reported that while as recently as two years ago it was still possible to buy .22-caliber ammunition “by the pallet-load… now they’re putting restrictions on how much you can get and how you get that ammo.”
Retailers are shooting blanks
This is a problem from ammunition retailers — and for gun owners as well. Statistically speaking, 24%-45% of Americans own guns either for self-defense or sporting purposes. But getting the ammo to load into those guns is becoming a bit of a trick.
Over the past five years, .22 ammo is said to have more than tripled in price. Historically, .22 ammo was obtainable for about $0.05 a round. And yes, some retailers are still advertising it for that price. Dicks Sporting Goods Inc (NYSE: DKS ) , for example, has two varieties of .22LR advertised for sale at roughly $0.05 per shell. But Wal-Mart Stores, (NYSE: WMT ) — long the go-to spot for impulse purchases of ammo — instituted a policy early last year limiting customers to buying no more than three boxes of ammo per person, per day. So getting in on Dick’s deal may not be as easy as it sounds ….