Lockheed Martin profit rises 22% on higher F-35 deliveries

Lockheed Martin Corp reported a 22per cent rise in quarterly profit on Tuesday and raised its 2019 profit forecast for the second time this year, helped by increased demand for its F-35 combat jets.

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Lockheed Martin is seen at Euronaval, the world naval defence exhibition in
FILE PHOTO: The logo of Lockheed Martin is seen at Euronaval, the world naval defence exhibition in Le Bourget near Paris, France, October 23, 2018. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier/File Photo

REUTERS: Lockheed Martin Corp on Tuesday reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit and raised its 2019 profit forecast for the second time in three months, helped by increased demand for its stealth F-35 combat jets and missiles.

The company’s shares rose 2.1per cent before the opening bell.

The Pentagon’s No.1 weapons supplier now expects full-year profit to range between US$20.85 and US$21.15 per share, compared with its previous forecast of US$20.05 to US$20.35 per share.

The company also raised sales estimate for the year to US$58.25 billion to US$59.75 billion, from US$56.75 billion to US$58.25 billion.

Lockheed’s missiles and fire control unit, which makes missile defenses like the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), was one of its best-performing units where sales grew 15.6per cent to US$2.41 billion during the quarter.

Sales from its aeronautics business, its biggest, rose 4.3per cent to US$5.55 billion, powered by higher F-35 jets production.

The company delivered 29 of its stealth F-35 combat aircraft during the quarter, compared with 25 a year ago.

The Bethesda, Maryland-based company’s net earnings rose to US$1.42 billion, or US$5 per share in the second quarter, surpassing analysts’ expectation of US$4.77 per share, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Sales grew 8per cent to US$14.43 billion, above analysts’ expectation of US$14.21 billion.

(Reporting by Divya R and Rachit Vats in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Maju Samuel)