Dick’s Sporting Goods Executive Finally Admits ‘Assault-Style’ Rifle Ban Was Bad for Business

Dick’s Sporting Goods stock is hurting in the months following their decision to stop selling “assault-style” rifles.

The company’s stock fell more than four percent due to J.P. Morgan’s projections for the sporting goods store.

“Looking forward, gross margin-driven upside appears less probable given 3Q’s performance, changing comparisons, and rising inventory levels,” said analyst Christopher Horvers. “The latter appears to be a theme across retail (which can be risky in the seasonal apparel world).”

Although the company had reported better-than-expected sales for the third quarter, top executives still admitted that their growth was impacted by the decision during a call with investors.

“In addition to the strategic decisions we made regarding firearms earlier this year, the broader industry has decelerated and remains weak as evidenced by most recent national background check data,” Lee Bolitsky, Dick’s chief financial officer said. “We believe this also contributed to the decline.”

Dick’s Sporting Goods is also exploring the possibility of stopping the sale of all hunting gear entirely in order to help the company.

“We are looking at a number of stores where the hunt business significantly under performs, and we will assess whether we want to take it out and replace it with these other categories if that ends up  to be a smart thing to do from a business standpoint,’’ CEO Ed Stack said.

The company will not reconsider its stance on gun sales at their stores, but it is uncertain if stopping the sale of hunting gear will help them grow.


  1. Dick’s is getting just what it deserves. Good and hard. I’ll never shop there for ANYTHING again.

  2. This is weak reporting. Dicks have been in trouble since December 2, 2016 which was their last high mark at $58.86 and then the bottom began to fall out. Stock price is down over 40% since that time and it was worse in 2017.

    So, their stock prices were down way before they made the decision to not sell AR style weapons. The downward trend is attributed to poor performance in their hunting and camping sections of their stores because of competition, especially internet sales.

  3. It sounds like all sporting goods stores are tanking. I’m also not so sure they are actually regreting their choice if their next decision is to get rid of the hunting department all together.

    The department likely wasn’t selling well even before they made the decision to stop selling certain rifles.

    1. I think a large part of the problem is competition, e.g. the internet, and non-specialized stores selling a lot of the same stuff.

      Firearms are a harder sell. They are highly-regulated and, again, competition.

      What I wonder is WHY Dick’s still has Stack as CEO. Not only did he make a really bad choice, but the stock will continue to tank. (source the WSJ)

      1. He probably made the choice because the gun sales were not doing well to begin with – so he tried to jump on the political bandwagon to see if that would boost other sales in other areas. Any backlash on lost hunter sales is probably considered minimal.

        I’m not saying it was a good choice, but most major decisions in companies like that are not made without some data to back it up.

        1. I’m not going to guess at his motives, but his choices proved wrong. I’m not so sure that “specialization” and harnessing the internet are bad things for sporting goods stores. REI is doing well, but they leverage the internet market. (they also charge some hefty prices).

  4. Anyone, who has stock in this company, is just plain stupid.
    Having a dim wit like this at the helm, is ignorance, squared.
    Anyone could have told this pea brain, that actions, have consequences.
    But in the liberal mindset?
    There are no consequences, for being stupid.

    1. Stock in any storefront retail has been risky since the competition from Amazon. But if you compare Dick’s Stock after hrs price and 1 yr ago, it is the same at $37.82.

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