2020 has been a roller coaster for America’s pawnbrokers — and not in the way you might think. | Getty Images/iStockphoto
It’s not just about the guns and gold: Loans are at the core of the pawn business.
Perry Lewin has been in the pawn industry for 28 years, but he’s never quite seen a year like this one. Sales have skyrocketed at his store, Decatur Jewelry and Antiques, in central Illinois. Early on in the pandemic, people were scooping up TVs, guitars, gaming systems, laptops, whatever they could to stay occupied and educated at home.
“We couldn’t keep a bicycle in the stock to save our life,” Lewin said. Tools were flying off the shelves, as many households decided it was the “perfect time for a honey-do list.” He estimates his gun and ammunition sales are up by 500
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