We’ll admit, we’re somewhat surprised by this list.
The firearms industry is, quite frankly, huge. According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s latest Economic Impact Report, the industry is directly responsible for about 128,794 jobs in the US and an additional 133,850 jobs in the supplier and ancillary fields. Altogether, roughly $6 billion is payed out annually to employees. On average, these are decent jobs, paying an average of $52,220 in wages and benefits in 2014. Ranging from factory workers to manufacturing engineers, accountants, and production supervisors, these are the men and women that work behind the scenes of an industry that generates about $43 billion in total economic activity.
Have you ever given a thought to starting a career in the industry? A study by the personal finance website WalletHub recently identified four states that on average, workers in the firearms industry made the most. What is strange is that these states are far from what many consider to be the hub of gun rights in the country, so why exactly do workers here get paid the best salaries?
Well, the answer may have something to do with cost of living and a high concentration of gun manufacturers. You might understand better after reading the list:
- New Hampshire
- New York
Historically, these four states are not known for their lax gun control laws, but they are home to some of the largest and oldest gun manufacturers in the United States. These include Sig Sauer, Ruger, Colt, Smith & Wesson, Thompson/Center Arms, Winchester, and many more. In the past few years more and more manufacturers have been paying closer attention to where they’re situated, and a few have moved halfway across the country to protest new gun control laws. While this has earned them the respect of their customers, it is not something that all companies can do, especially since it can prove to be very stressful for their employees.
It should be noted that according to WalletHub, New Hampshire produced the highest total number of firearms per Capita of any state, while Connecticut came in third. New Hampshire also had the most firearm industry jobs per Capita, followed by Idaho, Montana, Minnesota, and Arkansas. Based on economic and political impacts, WalletHub also found that Idaho, Alaska, Montana, South Dakota, and Arkansas are the states “most dependent” on the firearms industry. According to WalletHub, this was determined by the number of firearm industry jobs, the average salary of those jobs, total firearms produced and taxes paid, the number of gun owners and prevalence of gun sales, as well as contributions to politicians by either gun control groups, or gun rights supporters. The higher these factors are, the higher the state is on the list.
You can take a glance at the full list (in map form) below. Just click on the state to get an idea of where it fell on the list.