Belfast Telegraph

Lockheed Martin raises full-year outlook after fighter jet sales boost results

Defence giant Lockheed Martin has raised its full-year outlook after strong F-35 fighter jet sales helped boost its second quarter results.

The company reported a near 20% jump in its aeronautics division sales to 5.2 billion US dollars (£3.99 billion), which it said was "primarily" due to higher revenue from the F-35 programme which totalled 525 million (£403 million) for the quarter.

It helped raise total company revenue to 12.69 billion US dollars (£9.74 billion), compared with 11.58 billion US dollars (£8.88 billion) a year earlier, while operating profit increased from 1.38 billion dollars (£1.06 billion) to 1.49 billion US dollars (£1.14 billion).

Lockheed Martin subsequently lifted its full-year outlook, with the company now expecting net sales for 2017 to come in between 49.8 billion (£38.2 billion) and 51 billion US dollars (£3.9 billion).

That was compared with guidance issued in April, which forecast revenues would reach between 49.5 billion US dollars (£38 billion) and 50.7 billion US dollars (£38.9 billion).

Marillyn Hewson, Lockheed's president, chairman and chief executive, said: "Based on the corporation's strong results this quarter we increased our 2017 financial guidance for sales, profit, and earnings.

"Our team remains focused on performing with excellence for our customers and continuing to deliver growth and outstanding value to shareholders."

Earlier this month the US Pentagon announced an increase to its F-35 order from 2,443 jets to 2,456. However, the delivery schedule for the US order has not been confirmed.

Lockheed Martin shares, which are listed on the New York Stock Exchange, were up more than 1% in early trading.