What happened

Shares of 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE: DDD) plunged as much as 12.1% in trading Tuesday, after the Trump administration opened up the possibility of 3D-printing guns. At the close of trading, shares were down 11.3% on the day.

So what

The Trump administration's State Department announced a settlement that will allow consumers to 3D-print guns like AR-15s for personal use. This will bypass all background checks and other regulations for guns.

Person printing 3D parts

Image source: Getty Images.

3D-printed guns had been in a legal gray area, but that has ended for now with this announcement. But investors don't seem to be happy that 3D printers will be associated with guns, which could bring on more regulation.

Now what

This is kind of an odd move today, considering that the short-term sales of 3D printers may rise now that guns can be made with them. But the industry may not want the attention that guns bring, and at the moment, investors seem to feel the same way.

I don't think this fundamentally changes the investment thesis for 3D Systems, so investors looking at the stock may have a buying opportunity, but they should watch closely as the debate over 3D-printed guns continues.

Travis Hoium has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends 3D Systems. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.