Any thoughts that the start of 2016 would be smooth sailing for U.S. government contracting stocks and financial markets have quickly been cast aside as volatility from 2015’s second half carried into the new year.
TheÂ GovCon IndexÂ — our composite index of 30 large contractorÂ stocks — has recorded movements of at least a full percentage pointÂ up or downÂ in two trading days from four and sat at a loss of 3 percent for the week as of middayÂ Friday.
GovCon stocks appear to be getting swept in with investor fears over a potential economic slowdown in China, Â the world’s second largest economy and a central hub of raw material manufacturing.
One GovCon Index stock has held firm against the negativity so farÂ in the form of rocket and ammunition maker Orbital ATK with that company’s shares up nearly 2Â percent for the week as of middayÂ Friday.
Dulles, Virginia-based Orbital ATK was the Index’sÂ top gainer in 2015Â to the tune of 65 percent — more than double the rate of second-ranked Leidos — as investors appear to bet that the combination of Orbital Sciences and ATK’s aerospace and defense groups will generate returns.
The mergerÂ closed in February 2015Â and Orbital ATK has exceeded Wall Street’s earnings forecasts in all three quarters since it entered the market as a combined entity.
THE WEEK’S TOP GOVCONÂ STORIES