Americans have more guns than anywhere else in the world, and gun sales in the U.S. continue to eclipse those in any other country. This is true both in terms of gun ownership by person and absolute sales. America, without question, is the gun sales and gun ownership capital of the world.
The FBI has tracked gun background checks since the 1990s, and it reports the results in its Firearms Background Check Database. Background check figures, often used as a proxy for gun sales, have risen in most years — and they have risen much faster than the American population has.
Compared to the rest of the world, there are almost 400 million guns in the U.S — 1.2 per person — by far the most among all nations. By contrast, in Canada there are 0.34 guns per person. Gun violence levels in the U.S. are equally staggering. According to the Gun Violence Archive, there were 45,041 gun deaths last year. Slightly more than half of those were suicides.
In Tennessee, an estimated 483,700 guns were sold from January through July 2022 based on FBI background check data. Adjusted for population, this is equal to about 71.4 firearm sales for every 1,000 people, the ninth highest gun sale rate among states.