I’m in a similar boat, only I dont have a range to goto (they’re all closed). I worry when the ranges open back up I’ll end up blowing through my stash before I can replenish at a reasonable cost.
TLDR; the below -> IMO, if you think you will need more ammo this year, I’d heavily consider purchasing right now if you can stomach the cost.
Sam from SGAmmo has been pretty forthright in his emails over the last few years saying “stock up while the prices are good”. Last year, even before the beer flu, he was saying that prices would begin creeping up soon because the price of raw materials had gone up and most of his upstream had notified about upcoming price increases.
Forward to today, and here’s what he had to say in his newsletter (emphasis mine):
A lot has changed in the ammo business over the past 45 days as the Covid-19 outbreak created the largest rush to purchase ammo in all of history. Supply has been badly diminished, and bottlenecks in manufacturing and distribution will continue cause shortages for months yet to come. From what I am seeing the worst is yet to come on ammunition availability which I believe will reach its worst in the next 30 to 90 days. The buyer’s market conditions which I have talked about in so many prior newsletters that brought ammo prices to 12 year lows in 2018, 2019 and early 2020 have passed. I hope most people followed my advice in the past and stocked up while supply and prices were at their best. At this time supply has for the most part been bought up, most ammo factories and importers have done substantial price increases, and moving forward availability will be limited to what the factories can make and allocate to their distributors. Covid-19 has caused some ammunition factories in Europe and Russia to close and / or reduce production, and most likely that will spill over here to some of the manufacturers in the USA at some point. I’d love to stay positive but realistically there are dark times ahead for the ammunition supply chain. All things considered, I believe we still have some decent deals in stock, admittedly not as good as they were, but not as bad as I expect them to become. If you are sitting on large quantities of ammo it might be wise to sit it out for a while but if you are short in supply it might be a good idea to get a few cases before availability gets worse. We thank you for your support of our family owned and operated business and will do our best to serve our clients well in these strange times, so please stay subscribed for future SGAmmo newsletters. If you have some spare time please take a few minutes and look over the online catalog at www.SGAmmo.com
So I think supply will stay low into the summer months. That means prices will stay high (I’m seeing consistently 30-50% higher) until supply starts catching up. Prices will drop over the rest of the year, but I don’t think they will drop to pre-COVID levels for more than a year, if ever.
If it looks like Biden may win the election, that may spark another buying rush and a corresponding ammo panic and jack up prices. If one of the US-based ammo manufacturers suffers an outbreak like the Smithfield pork plant that will cause more shortages and a corresponding price hike over reduced supply. If a second wave of COVID sparks more TP shortages and closing economy and people start worrying about societal collapse again, there will be another price surge.
A pair of videos from MrGunsNGear, in the early days of the pandemic give a little more insight: