Lockheed Martin Earnings Top Estimates Despite Budget Battle

Lockheed Martin still expects to grow sales this year despite the budget morass that has left Pentagon spending stuck at prior-year levels and prevented defense companies from starting some new programs.

The world’s biggest military contractor prefers to call itself a “deterrence company,” but it was sales of missiles such as GMLRS and Himars–replenishing stocks used in Ukraine–that helped sales and profits beat analysts’ expectations in the quarter ended Sept. 24.

The U.S. budget impasse restricts the Pentagon’s ability to order new weapons for Ukraine and opportunities to backfill stocks sent to Israel. It can take as much as two years for orders to translate into sales, so most of the lift from the conflicts won’t come until 2024 and beyond.

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