JOPLIN, Mo. — Local pawn shops have been busy since the coronavirus pandemic began six months ago.
Mark Farmer, Owner, Joplin Pawn and Purchase, said, “This has actually been our busiest season this summer. This past summer has been record setting numbers.”
Since March, Joplin Pawn and Purchase’s foot traffic has been non-stop and items that keep us entertained at home have been flying off the shelves.
“People bought TV’s, game systems, guitars, they wanted to learn some new hobbies. So we sold banjos, guitars, all this stuff through the whole process and we haven’t really slowed down at all.”
Another trend they’ve noticed this year–more people buying guns.
“Gun sales, ammo sales, we can’t get enough of it.”
A study by the FBI in just 8 months of 2020, more than 25 million firearm background checks have been done. In the entire year of 2019–28 million were done. 26 million were done in 2018. And more people have been selling tools.
“We see a lot of tools. We don’t take a lot of tools because we’re so inundated with tools.”
Farmer says he thinks a lot of people have possibly been out of work with no use for them now. And with more people needing cash, they’ve been giving out more loans too.
“It’s just much easier to bring something into a pawn shop we give them a 100 bucks, they leave, they come back in 30 days and they actually have up to 90 days to give it back.”