STREAMING NOW: Watch Now
CLOSINGS: View Closings

Sturm Ruger has cut 700 jobs in the last year

The drop in gun sales has lead to deep job cuts at Sturm RugerOn Wednesday, the company reported a 21% sales d...

Posted: Feb 23, 2018 7:37 AM
Updated: Feb 23, 2018 7:37 AM

The drop in gun sales has lead to deep job cuts at Sturm Ruger

On Wednesday, the company reported a 21% sales decline for 2017. Thursday it disclosed that it has cut 700 jobs, or more than a quarter of its staff, over the last 13 months. That leaves it with 1,750 workers.

"When we reduced production in 2017, we had to make some difficult decisions," said CEO Chris Killoy, on a call with analysts Thursday. Many of the jobs were eliminated through attrition. The company also had 320 temporary employees a year ago who have since left the company. In January, the company needed to further reduce staff, prompting it to lay off an additional 60 workers.

Related: Sturm Ruger says gun sales plunged

Gun sales have been sharply lower across the industry since President Donald Trump was elected. Fears that Hillary Clinton would win the presidency and seek tougher gun control laws drove record sales through 2016, and encouraged retailers to stock up on inventory. With the election of Trump and Republicans in control of both houses of Congress, those fears greatly abated.

Killoy said that 2017 FBI background checks, which correspond roughly to purchases, fell 11%. Retailers also cut back on purchases to reduce inventory.

"2017 was a challenging year for the firearm industry," Killoy. But he said as a result of the job cuts, "we're better positioned to compete in 2018."

There has been more talk about gun control in the week since the shooting of 17 students and staff at a Florida high school, led by many of the students and families from that school.

President Trump and some Republicans, including Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, have voiced new support for some gun control measures. But it's too soon to say whether those efforts will affect gun sales.

Killoy did not mention the gun control debate during his conference call, although he did express sympathy for victims of the Florida shooting.

"Like all Americans, we struggle with the shock and sadness of these terrible events," he said.

Related: Gunmaker Remington says it will file for bankruptcy

Sturm Ruger is not the only company to report a drop in sales. Overall the industry has reported a sales decline of more than $600 million in 2017.

Gun maker Remington has warned it plans to file for bankruptcy protection soon. Killoy was asked about whether Sturm Ruger would be interested in buying Remington, given that it has a strong balance sheet. Ruger's cash on hand fell by nearly $24 million during the year, but it still has $63.5 million and no debt. He wouldn't rule out a deal for Remington, but wouldn't comment on it directly.

"We're watching that closely," he said the coming bankruptcy case. "We wish them well going through that process. With $63 million cash on hand, it may provide some opportunities down the road."

Correction: An earlier version of this article misspelled Sturm Ruger.

Huntsville/Redstone
Clear
53° wxIcon
Hi: 56° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 53°
Muscle Shoals
Clear
57° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 57°
Huntsville/Madison
Clear
54° wxIcon
Hi: 55° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 54°
Decatur
Clear
54° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 54°
Fort Payne
Clear
55° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 55°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 498887

Reported Deaths: 10122
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson719121402
Mobile36328740
Madison32639469
Tuscaloosa24372421
Montgomery22765520
Shelby22231218
Baldwin19890289
Lee15057158
Calhoun13901294
Morgan13770255
Etowah13407325
Marshall11452213
Houston10130264
Elmore9499190
Limestone9429138
St. Clair9041227
Cullman8991183
Lauderdale8618214
DeKalb8507175
Talladega7628165
Walker6593259
Jackson6551104
Autauga633392
Blount6246128
Colbert6004121
Coffee5268104
Dale4676107
Russell407333
Franklin400078
Covington3998106
Chilton3902103
Escambia379273
Tallapoosa3631143
Clarke344553
Chambers3432111
Dallas3422142
Pike293273
Marion288595
Lawrence285386
Winston258568
Bibb245758
Marengo243057
Geneva240570
Pickens225557
Barbour213951
Hale212269
Fayette202257
Butler201766
Henry183641
Cherokee178140
Monroe166739
Randolph165140
Washington156836
Macon147745
Crenshaw146555
Clay146054
Cleburne139941
Lamar133933
Lowndes132851
Wilcox122825
Bullock117436
Conecuh107024
Perry106227
Sumter100432
Coosa90224
Greene88732
Choctaw55423
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 780894

Reported Deaths: 11534
CountyCasesDeaths
Shelby877551513
Davidson81978873
Knox46346589
Hamilton40635463
Rutherford38663387
Williamson25433204
Sumner21498320
Montgomery17505213
Out of TN1711195
Wilson16553211
Unassigned15813126
Sullivan14489275
Blount14167184
Bradley13039141
Washington12834234
Maury12262162
Sevier12127165
Putnam10647170
Madison10130231
Robertson9016121
Hamblen8086165
Anderson8075158
Greene7317145
Tipton6972103
Coffee6423115
Dickson6274106
Gibson6197141
Cumberland6130123
Carter5996155
McMinn596293
Roane593896
Bedford5826120
Loudon573567
Jefferson5700119
Lawrence557883
Monroe536990
Warren532877
Hawkins527898
Dyer5243101
Franklin475485
Fayette468673
Obion437095
Lincoln415962
Rhea415373
Cocke402596
Cheatham396344
Marshall392257
Campbell382859
Weakley379660
Giles375597
Henderson362374
Carroll349281
White339766
Hardeman339165
Macon337473
Hardin331963
Lauderdale309742
Henry301475
Marion295245
Scott288344
Wayne288230
Overton286258
Claiborne283769
McNairy268653
Hickman267141
DeKalb266951
Haywood264960
Smith257736
Grainger244946
Trousdale239822
Morgan230838
Fentress229644
Johnson217338
Chester202448
Bledsoe201210
Crockett197647
Unicoi181647
Polk178722
Cannon178030
Union173334
Grundy170130
Lake167926
Sequatchie157227
Humphreys155221
Decatur154137
Benton151139
Lewis147525
Meigs126923
Jackson125734
Stewart124125
Clay107131
Houston103732
Perry103628
Moore94616
Van Buren79720
Pickett74623
Hancock49712

Community Events