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Lockheed Martin Heads Higher On Solid Q3 Results

By: Investor's Business Daily
Posted: 10/22/2013 6:17:00 PM
Referenced Stocks: GD;LMT;NOC;RTN

In case you hadn't noticed, IBD's Aerospace/Defense group is well represented in the Dividend Leaders screen.Raytheon ( RTN ),General Dynamics ( GD ) (profiled Tuesday in this space) andLockheed Martin ( LMT ) all make the cut, due in large part to a consistent track record of dividend payouts.

In late September, Lockheed Martin raised its quarterly dividend 16% to $1.33 a share. The dividend will be paid on Dec. 27 to shareholders of record Dec. 2. It currently yields a tidy 4.2%.

Early Tuesday, Lockheed reported better-than-expected earnings and sales. Profit rose 14% from a year ago to $2.57 a share, easily topping the consensus estimate by 31 cents. Sales of $11.35 billion fell 4% to $11.35 billion, but also beat views.

Its aeronautics unit accounted for nearly one-third of total revenue. Sales fell 2% from a year ago to $3.6 billion due to fewer aircraft deliveries of its F-16 and F-22 jets. Higher sales of F-35 fighter jets and C-130 and C-5 transport plans helped offset the decline. The only unit to show a sales gain was Missiles and Fire Control, up 3% to $2 billion on strength in air and missile defense programs.

Despite uncertainty over future military spending, the company generated $15 billion of orders in the third quarter and increased its backlog to $78.7 billion.

Lockheed raised its full-year earnings outlook to $9.40-$9.70 share, better than its prior forecast of $9.20-$9.50. The current consensus estimate is for $9.50, up 12%.

Lockheed rebounded nicely Tuesday after diving 3% in heavy volume the prior day. It's back above its 50-day moving average and is 1% off an all-time high, but several above-average volume declines since Sept. 20 have caused its Accumulation/Distribution Rating to slump to D. The stock is four weeks into a new consolidation.

Northrop Grumman ( NOC ) reports Wednesday andRaytheon ( RTN ) reports Thursday.