A new McAleese & Associates report says major defense prime contractors recorded a 4 percent to 6 percent increase in sector profit during the third quarter of 2021.
Jim McAleese, founder of McAleese & Associates and a three-time Wash100 winner, presented an analysis of the Q3 financial performance of Boeing (NYSE: BA), General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), Huntington Ingalls Industries (NYSE: HII), L3Harris Technologies (NYSE: LHX), Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT), Northrop Grumman (NYSE: NOC) and Raytheon Technologies (NYSE: RTX).
McAleese said the quarterly sector profit growth could be attributed to a combination of cost-cutting efforts and earlier profit booking/risk retirements.
Defense companies reported $12.3 billion in free cash flow and returned $18.1 billion in cash to investors in the form of dividends and share repurchases.
McAleese said major defense primes projects an overall sales growth of about 2 percent in 2021 amid the decline in Q3 sales as a result of supply chain disruptions.
He also noted that Lockheed and Northrop are pursuing classified development programs and that Raytheon is joining these two contractors as they attempt to maximize their sales growth in the field of hypersonics.