FBI background checks, as adjusted by the NSSF, continued their trend of year-over-year declines, falling 7.8 percent in December to 1.49 million from 1.62 million in December 2017 on an NSSF-adjusted basis.

For comparison, the unadjusted December 2018 FBI NICS figure 2.52  million reflects a 2.3 percent decrease from the unadjusted FBI NICS figure of 2.58 million in December 2017.

The fourth quarter 2018 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) figure of 3.81 million reflects a decrease of 9.4 percent over the 4.21 million figure for fourth quarter 2017. The 2018 annual total of 13.1 million is a 6.1 percent decrease over the 2017 annual total of 13.97 million.

The adjusted NICS data were derived by subtracting out NICS purpose code permit checks and permit rechecks used by states for CCW permit application checks as well as checks on active CCW permit databases. NSSF started subtracting permit rechecks in February 2016.