Military and self-defense calibers are among those in shortest supply. Quantities of 9mm, .40 S&W, and .45 ACP in full-metal jacketed loads are extremely difficult to obtain for service pistols, as are the .223 Remington/5.56 NATO common to the AR-15 platform, the 7.6×39 common to Mini-30, SKS, and AKM-pattern rifles, and the 7.62x54R and .308 Winchester/7.62 NATO used in popular Soviet and NATO battle-rifle calibers. Back-orders for many of these common cartridges extend from six to 18 months.
Tellingly, much of the ammunition being purchased is not being shot, but is instead being stockpiled.
It is now common for even recreational shooters to amass a reserve of thousands to tens of thousands of rounds of ammunition as a hedge against future shortages or expected price increases.
Some individuals have amassed hundreds of thousands of rounds of ammunition (none of those contacted by PJ Media wanted to discuss their purchases on the record). The majority of these individuals have noted the drastic increase in the cost of ammunition and the more telling long-term cost of ammunition and components, and view ammunition as a stable long-term investment: “Lead is the new gold” is becoming a common phrase.