in the United States, payment facilities for weapons

Several fintechs offer, in partnership with arms manufacturers, credit solutions to equip themselves with assault rifles costing several thousand dollars.

Four days after another mass shooting in the United States, the debate on arms sales continues to circle. For the anti-guns, the massacre of 19 children in Uvalde, Texas by an 18-year-old young man is proof of the need to regulate their circulation. For the pro-guns, the killer is to blame, not the guns.

Nothing really new in the United States where the question comes up on the table with each new drama. But for President Joe Biden, it will be very difficult to stem the phenomenon: in the country, an assault rifle has become a consumer good like any other.

Pay in three installments

As Bloomberg tells it, the best proof is on the website of the manufacturer of the weapon, implicated in the killing of Uvalde. If the company Daniel Defense highlights a message of condolence to the victims, it also displays on its homepage very attractive payment facilities to afford the offending assault rifle.

“Buy now, pay later.” In partnership with the fintech Credova, the manufacturer therefore offers to afford an AR-15 at several thousand dollars and to pay for it within three months, at no additional cost. And it is even possible to split your payment into three instalments.

If most financing companies are reluctant to unite with arms dealers, Credova and its competitor Sezzle have made it one of their assets to break into the United States.

Child Version

These payment facilities are one of the strategies for accelerating sales which, contrary to popular belief, ultimately tend to decline. If the anxiety-provoking climate of the pandemic has caused an explosion in sales in 2020, Americans are buying fewer weapons than before. In April, sales fell by 20% compared to last year. In reality, it is mainly the share of Americans who own weapons that is falling, from 47% in 1973 to 38% in 2018.

To stem this trend, manufacturers and sellers do not hesitate to make pistols and rifles ever more accessible and attractive. Evidenced by children’s versions of weapons traditionally used on the battlefield. Smaller and less heavy, they are nevertheless very lethal.

In the United States, more than 20 million guns were sold in 2021, or about 6 guns for every 100 Americans.

Corporate responsibility

At the same time, some companies are taking the opposite path by tightening their policies. This is particularly the case of the giant Walmart which announced in 2019 that it would no longer sell ammunition for AR-15 type assault rifles, four years after having stopped the sale of the weapons themselves – hunting weapons are still available. .

This movement could also accelerate in companies, which are increasingly cautious about the nature of their investments. In recent years, major groups have taken a stand on many social issues, from the war in Ukraine to the right to abortion.

Thomas Le Roy Journalist BFM Business

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