Dicks Sporting Goods will reportedly stop selling guns at 440 more stores, the company announced on Tuesday. The athletic supplies chain has been stepping down its sales of firearms for over two years now — ever since the Parkland, Florida, school shooting on Feb. 14, 2018. Based on the company's earnings report, it will not hurt the bottom line.
Dick's Sporting Goods released an earnings report for the fourth quarter of 2019 on Tuesday, along with a big announcement about the company's firearm policy. According to a report by CNN Business, the company is making a big move to scale back the sale of guns overall.
Dick's has 827 stores in total across the nation, and is the largest sporting good retailer in the U.S. The company reported an increase in net sales by 4.7 percent year over year, with a total of $2.6 billion. The announcement caused its stock price to jump by 14 percent on a day that was otherwise bad for trading.
Dick's has been conducting "a strategic review" of its firearms and hunting supplies business ever since the Parkland shooting. A few days after the tragic attack, the company announced that it would stop selling semi-automatic weapons like the one used by the shooter.
A few months after the shooting, Dick's pulled all guns and related accessories from 10 stores, to test the effect on business. Overall sales reportedly increased at those locations, and Dick's decided to continue the endeavor. In March of 2019, the company pulled all guns, accessories and ammunition from another 125 stores.
At the time, the company's CEO Edward Stack told CNN that the company was treating its new gun policies "as a multi-year initiative." He said that he expected the company to remove guns from even more stores in 2020, but did not hint that it would be as many as 440.
Responses to the Dick's Sporting Goods announcement seemed to be evenly split on social media, but emphatic on both sides. Some praised the company for supporting what they saw as a public safety initiative, while others condemned it, saying that it was interfering with their constitutional rights.
"Good. We need to fight back against this American fetish with guns. This helps," one person tweeted.0comments
"What a disgrace. It's like they're saying 'f— the Second Amendment.' NOT COOL!!" wrote another.
Other retailers continue to sell guns and ammunition all around the U.S. According to CNN, Walmart remains the biggest firearms retailer in the country. With gun law reform looming as a massive issue in the 2020 presidential election, there is no telling which way the pendulum may swing next.