Weekly dose of microtrends that will shape our future

Electoral powder keg: NWO detects multiple inflection points in signals related to firearms

Miro Dimitrov

This year has turned out to be a great boon for the firearms industry, which saw record sales since the beginning of the pandemic. A mix of pandemic related anxiety, anger against the government's mitigation efforts combined with nationwide protests and riots triggered unprecedented growth in first-time gun owners. And the potential for a contested election could bring this "perfect storm" of frustrations and anxieties to the fore.

Fuel to the fire: NWO's predictive signals capture the mindshare occupied by topics across search engines, online media as well as TV stations and can offer unprecedented early-stage insight on the ebbs and flows of various themes in culture. NWO's platform notified clients of several inflection points in the signals for "contested election" and "electoral violence", both of which have experienced exponential growth in the past 3 months alone (734% and 112% respectively).

First-time buyers vs repeat buyers: NWO's signals are hinting of an uptick with some first-time gun buyers fearing an unraveling of the social order and some gun owners worried that the government might use its emergency powers to restrict gun purchases. The signal for "firearms license" effectively captures interest from first-time buyers. The signal recently reached an inflection point and is quickly approaching a saturation level it once hit during the pandemic stockpiling back in March and also the George Floyd protests in June.

Interest in the purchase of ammunition followed a similar trend line, indicating strong interest from gun owners. The pink and blue curves overlaid on top of the signal denote relative change in stock price of Smith & Wesson ($SWBI) and Sturm Ruger ($RGR) respectively and have shown to have a strong correlation to the signal.

Military-grade tactical gear is the go-to for doomsday prep: NWO analyzed dozens of trending items listed by gun stores and it is evident that there is a clear preference for military-style tactical gear. For instance, the signal for body armor plates which are meant to withstand live rounds fired from assault weapons is up 192% over 6 months.

Interest in CM-6M, a tactical mask made for riot control situations, grew by 180% over 6 months.

Retail chains such as 5.11 Tactical are leveraging the preparedness mindset and turning it into a national brand, has had its signal grow by 47% over 3 months with multiple inflection points - a sign that various factions are indeed preparing for a war-like scenario. Interestingly, President Donald Trump's adult sons are linked to the brand.

E-commerce sites such as Gunbroker.com have seen a steady buildup in their signals since the mass protests in June (currently the signal is at an all-time high).

The proliferation of online militia groups: Tactical-gear companies are benefiting from a rush of citizens joining online armed groups such as MyMilitia.com. Dubbed "Amazon for people on the fringe," the online hub offers chat rooms, a library of manuals, and a directory of 530 local militias around the country. The site is full of posts from newcomers seeking advice, with lengthy forums discussing the likely course of a "second Civil War".

Our prediction: Regardless of the outcome of the election, it is highly likely that there are going to be factions vehemently opposed to the outcome - given the abundance of troubling signals. Federal law bans any activity that would “intimidate, threaten, or coerce a person” to interfere with the right to vote, but doesn’t prohibit citizens from, say, brandishing submachine guns in the parking lots outside polling locations.

NWO election tracker has been allocating percentage chance of winning the election to each candidate since June 2020. The algorithm behind the tracker primarily takes into account the Impact Signal, Sentiment as well as contextual signals surrounding the two candidate. As of October 20th, the algorithm is indicating an 82.41% chance that Biden will the election, with the lead only widening in the weeks leading up to November 3.

COVID-19 has created a new social, political, and economic world order. NWO.AI’s predictive platform generates alerts ahead of time and pre-empts users about rising trends before they become exponential. Reach out for a demo and we can help you better understand your category and ways to approach it.

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