The May 2023 NSSF-adjusted National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) figure of 1,174,142 is a decrease of 0.1 percent compared to the May 2022 NSSF-adjusted NICS figure of 1,174,791. For comparison, the unadjusted May 2023 FBI NICS figure of 2,343,850 reflects a 3.2 percent increase from the unadjusted FBI NICS figure of 2,272,187 in May 2022.

May 2023 marks the 46th month in a row that has exceeded 1 million adjusted background checks in a single month.

Twenty-four states currently have at least one qualified alternative permit, which under the Brady Act allows the permit holder, who has undergone a background check to obtain the permit, to purchase a firearm from a licensed dealer without a separate additional background check for that transfer. The number of NICS checks in these states does not include these legal transfers based on qualifying permits and NSSF does not adjust for these transfers.

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.

Though not a direct correlation to firearms sales, the NSSF-adjusted NICS data provide an additional picture of current market conditions. In addition to other purposes, NICS is used to check transactions for sales or transfers of new or used firearms.