Lockheed Martin gets $2B boost from F-35 fighter jet

Lockheed's F-35 accounted for about one-third of sales increase

Lockheed Martin delivered better-than-expected full-year results, sending shares higher ahead of the opening bell.

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The Bethesda, Maryland-based defense contractor earned $6.2 billion in 2019, or $21.95 a share, as revenue rose 11.1 percent to $59.8 billion. About one-third of the sales jump was due to a $2 billion increase in revenue from the F-35 fighter, the most expensive weapons program in Department of Defense history. Lockheed delivered 134 F-35s in 2019, a 47 percent increase from a year earlier.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
LMTLOCKHEED MARTIN CORPORATION334.96-3.99-1.18%

Wall Street analysts surveyed by Refinitiv were expecting full-year earnings of $21.86 a share on revenue of $59.2 billion.

"The corporation delivered outstanding performance throughout 2019, achieving exceptional sales growth, strong earnings, cash from operations, and a record backlog," CEO Marillyn Hewson said in a statement. Sales orders the company has yet to fill jumped 10 percent to $143.98 billion.

Looking ahead, Lockheed raised its full-year earnings forecast to $23.65 to $23.95 per share, missing the $24.30 that Wall Street had projected. Sales for 2020 are expected to be $62.75 billion to $64.25 billion, higher than the $62.55 billion that analysts were anticipating.

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Lockheed shares have risen 11 percent this year through Monday, outpacing the S&P 500's 0.4 percent gain.