After gunmaker Smith & Wesson announced late Thursday afternoon, September 6, that their sales had jumped by nearly 50 percent from a year ago, the company’s share price rocketed from $9 to $11 within minutes of the opening of trading on Friday morning.
Specifically, the company announced that sales were up 48.3 percent from the same quarter last year and that profits had nearly doubled. In addition, its backlog of orders jumped more than 163 percent, causing Jeffrey Buchanan, Smith & Wesson’s chief financial officer, to raise the company's expectations for 2013:
Based on our stronger than anticipated first quarter, [and] current consumer orders for our products ... we are increasing our full year 2013 financial guidance.
S&W’s announcement followed a similar announcement by Sturm, Ruger & Company — better known simply as Ruger — on August 20 that the gunmaker was on schedule to beat last year’s record of 1,114,700 firearms produced in a year, having already made one million of them by August 15. Mike Fifer, Ruger’s CEO, was delighted:
Last year, Ruger became the first commercial firearms company to produce one million firearms in one year, and we were incredibly excited and proud to reach that milestone. It took us nearly all of 2011 to build one million firearms, but in 2012 we accomplished it on August 15th.
We continue to invest in and improve our manufacturing processes to help us respond to the strong demand for Ruger firearms. We expect 2012 will be another record-breaking year for Ruger, and we want to thank our loyal customers for their continued support.
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