If gunmakers get partial legal immunity will prices relax?


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Boats
April 9, 2003, 10:17 AM
It seems logical to me that if gunmakers get a partial lawsuit shield that the price of their insurance will fall dramatically over time and that as a result, the price of all guns, but particularly handguns, should fall in price at least somewhat. If gunmakers want to sell more guns, they would be well advised to make them more affordable one would think. Something just tells me that it won't happen for some reason. What do you think?

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priv8ter
April 9, 2003, 10:45 AM
Being a cynical type of person, I don't think so. I think the gun manufactures have proven what we are willing to pay, and prices won't drop much.

Kind of the same thing if the magazing capacity limit goes away...prices might drop a bit, but now that we have proved we will pay $$$$$$ for full capacity mags, they will never go back to there pre-ban price.

Handy
April 9, 2003, 12:20 PM
Are prices up? Aside from Glock and HK2000s, handgun prices haven't gone up in ten years.

Spot77
April 9, 2003, 03:47 PM
I agree...we are conditioned to pay certain prices, and gun manufacturers and dealers know this.

I would assume that they've taken a beating in recent years with all of the new legislation and lawsuits sapping their financial resources.

Nope, if they can make more profit, they surely will, just like any other business.

rock jock
April 9, 2003, 04:02 PM
I have no problem with the gun manufacturers making a healthy profit. The more profit, the more R&D, the more new guns. Its a win-win situation.

stretcharmstrong
April 9, 2003, 04:16 PM
"I have no problem with the gun manufacturers making a healthy profit. The more profit, the more R&D, the more new guns. Its a win-win situation."

And hopefully better quality control and customer service too.

Standing Wolf
April 9, 2003, 11:44 PM
I can't imagine firearms prices would decline. Profits might increase, but prices decline? Not likely.

mashaffer
April 9, 2003, 11:52 PM
Are prices up? Aside from Glock and HK2000s, handgun prices haven't gone up in ten years.

Unless my memory fails me MSRP for Ruger revolvers is up about $150 over the past few years (about 35%).

Nick96
April 10, 2003, 12:56 AM
If you don't want to read this whole thing - just skip to the bottom line.

Actually, just in my experience, I've found handgun prices in general to be one of the least inflationary over the past 15 years or so. I've got several old "Annual Handgun Prices" magazines from the late 80's and early 90's - and the prices aren't a lot different from todays prices. Actual asking prices on gun shelves bear that out too. There are of course the occasional "flavor of the day" pieces that hit the market that everyone has to have that are somewhat artifically inflated (name the latest ohh & ahh wonder gun that everyone just has to have).

One could hope that handguns would go the route of electronic calculators, computers and printers. But I don't think there have been any radical cost saving manufacturing techniques, increasing demand for lower price units or greatly increased manufacturing competition to foster such.

As to the question of decreased potential liability impacting insurance costs - don't count on any price relief there. Large corporations don't go out and by package insurance policies (like we do with auto, home owners, etc. personal lines). In insurance lingo, when the market is "soft", insurance companies sell higher limits of coverage cheaper. When the market is "harder", corporations whith the financial where with all assume more first dollar liability. You guessed it - the little guy running a mom & pop machine shop or a service business out of the back of a few pick up trucks gets screwed. But the big guys alter risk financing and operational practices.

In other words, when insurance is cheap - they buy it and forget about claims costs (let the insurance company worry about it). Which eventually causes insurance companies to raise prices (whole nuther discussion about combined ratios, loss triangles, reserve setting practices, investment income, etc.). Thus when insurance prices increase, corporations begin to manage loss potentials better (IE: improved safety programs, more dilligent claims management, greater quality control to reduce the likelyhood of product failures, etc.).

So in a way, high insurance prices and the threat of liability claims tends to create an environment where a higher quality product is produced. But since risk financing and loss prevention techniques vary per market conditions - we, the handgun consumer, see little fluctuation in retail unit pricing.

Bottom Line:
No - The price of guns will not be significantly impacted by minor liability relief and reduced insurance costs.

Waitone
April 10, 2003, 04:29 PM
First instinct will be to retain pricing and enjoy lowered costs.

I said first instinct because that is what it is. Then the reality of competition will set in and prices will eventually begin to drop and stabilitize in the same relationship to where they were before the reduction began.

If gun manufacturers get smart and put money into improved customer service, better advertising, better distribution, etc. it will be more difficult to lower prices.

There is no such thing as windfall profits. Incrememtal profits over and above usual and customary will either be used to improve service or it will disappear.

Blueduck
April 10, 2003, 11:28 PM
Consumer economics was explained to me many years ago in college.

My sophmore year I learned that their was a great increase in the number of medical students that year meaning many more MD's in years to come. It was explained to me that health care cost would go up as consumers would have to pay the salaries of all those Doctors.

Two years later the same professor in another class noted that applications to medical schools were way down because people didn't want to become MD's due to the high liability insurance. The result? health care cost would go up due to less competition between MD's.

Now you understand consumer economics :banghead:

cratz2
April 11, 2003, 12:32 AM
Actually, I think Glock prices have remained quite stready over the past three years. Berettas go up, SIGs go up, S&Ws go up. But Glocks over the last three years haven't. Of course, they all have in 10 years.

Justin
April 11, 2003, 03:34 AM
My sophmore year I learned that their was a great increase in the number of medical students that year meaning many more MD's in years to come. It was explained to me that health care cost would go up as consumers would have to pay the salaries of all those Doctors. That makes no sense. Consumers don't have to pay for the salaries of doctors any more than they have to pay for a can of Pringles. If the market is saturated with too many doctors, competition would drive prices down. Some docs might decide that it's no longer profitable, quit, and go find a different line of work. Of course, if a lot of MD's quit, then prices would probably go up again.

Blueduck
April 11, 2003, 09:30 AM
but Justin he was proved right on both counts... ;)

Actually I argued (and still believe) health care does not follow normal economic rules for one simple reason. If you want a can of pringles or a Corvett you weigh the price versus what you recieve, decide whether you really want it, figure out if you have enough money for it at the time, or if there might be a lower cost alternative.

When your told you need a liver or heart transplant or will die in the next two months the above factors really play no role in most peoples decisions.

Tamara
April 11, 2003, 10:10 AM
When your told you need a liver or heart transplant or will die in the next two months the above factors really play no role in most peoples decisions.

Yes, but there are only so many livers every year that actually need transplanting. ;)

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